Local attorney Tim Morell offered incentive to the People's Republic of China to focus on their country's explosive industrial growth. Although China is often associated with rapid population growth, there is a new boom in the People's Republic: the computer industry. The purpose of a recent visit by a delegation from the Chinese State Administration for Industry and Commerce was to learn about the legalities of conducting business and exchanging information in the computer age.

    At Northwood Institute, Palm Beach attorney Tim Morell delivered a speech titled "Political/Business Philosophies in Hi-Technology" to the delegation. Mr. Morell is a civil attorney whose focus is high technology commercial litigation. He is a member of the Florida Bar Association's Computer Law Committee, board certified computer law mediator in the Florida Bar's computer Law Mediation Project, and active in the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility Association.

    Mr. Morell spoke about political and business philosophies in high technology and the issues raised by the continuous changes and advances in computer technology. To illustrate, Mr. Morell noted that it took the computer industry less than 6 years to reach the present market level of the automobile industry - and that the first main-frame government computer, the Univac, has been sitting in the Smithsonian Museum since 1964, right alongside the Spirit of St. Louis.

    The computer industry in China is experiencing explosive growth, but very few guidelines and laws have been established. Although the exchange of information between businesses is very open, there is very virtually no freedom of access to government records and no cohesive regulation on transferring information. The Chinese look to the United States as a model for instituting laws and practices to govern high technology industries.

    Mr. Morell stressed that a delicate balance must be maintained in terms of access to and exchange of information. "Efficient access to information can lead to quick acquisition of data, but can also be regarded as an invasion of privacy." Data access abuse costs businesses millions of dollars and valuable time due to vandalism, fraud, and theft. Morell warned the Chinese that all governments' regulating of national and international information exchange is increasing. More restrictions are being implemented to close markets and to protect native businesses. Both the sharing and protecting of information are necessary to conduct business effectively in a global economy.

    Although China certainly needs to establish guidelines to regulate and protect its industry, Mr. Morell pointed out that China needs to consider international industry as well. As restrictions are increasing, the political and economic effects warrant concern.

    The Chinese learned first hand about the need for regulations to allow for controlled access and smooth exchange, to protect the rights of businesses and individuals, and to avoid the threat of trade wars. According to Mr. Morell, "China simply does not have time to learn from its own mistakes. And since no one knows just how large China's economic impact will be, countries such as the United States cannot sit back and watch China struggle."

    For additional information, contact Tim Morell, Esq. at (561) 586-1241

Tim Morell, Attorney At Law, P. O. Box 2811, Palm Beach, FL  33480 Phone 561.586.1241

Fax 561.586.6871

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