A study conducted by the European Union’s Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) has revealed that counterfeit bags, clothing, smartphones and fraudulent drugs cost the European economy a loss of €60 billion each year.
And despite continued efforts, measures to tackle counterfeit imports still lag behind the size of the issue. According to figures published by the Commission in 2016, customs authorities seized around 41 million counterfeit goods with a total value of the equivalent authentic products is estimated at just above €672 million.
The damage is significant. Estimates suggest that the loss of revenue caused counterfeiting equates to around 434,000 jobs across the 13 industries analysed by the report, which included leather goods, toys, clothing, wine and spirits, tobacco products and drugs.
“Consumers are the first affected by being the victim of collateral damage caused by these counterfeiters, who do not hesitate to trick others to make more profits. The study shows that we need to increase and persist with awareness campaigns,” said the head of UNIFAB, Christian Peugeot.