Counterfeit or pirated products that are sold in the world reach an amount of 460,000 million euros (522,000 million dollars), according to the Intellectual Property Office of the European Union (Euipo) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
According to a report, the figure represents a significant increase compared to the 338,000 million euros (about 383.121 million dollars) that were calculated in another study of 2016.
In the EU, it is estimated that 6.8% of all imports from third countries are in counterfeit and pirated products, with a value of up to 121,000 million euros (137,400 million dollars), according to Euipo, an organization based in the Spanish city of Alicante (east).
It is a steep increase when compared to the EU’s 5% estimate of imports that was presented in the 2016 report.
The companies and businesses most affected by counterfeiting and piracy continue to be based mainly in OECD countries such as the USA, France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, Japan, Korea and the United Kingdom, according to the news agency EFE.
However, an increasing number of companies registered in other economies – including China, Brazil and Hong Kong – are also affected by global trade in counterfeit products.
In the words of the executive director of the Euipo, Christian Archambeau, “counterfeiting and piracy constitute a major threat to innovation and economic growth, both at EU and global level” and the situation “requires the full implementation of coordinated measures at all levels, “he said.
The report highlights that counterfeit products can come from almost any economy in the world, whether they are produced directly or introduced through a transit point.
The report uses data from almost half a million customs seizures carried out by authorities such as the World Customs Organization, the General Directorate of Taxation and Customs Union of the European Commission and the Department of National Security of the United States.
The results do not cover counterfeit and pirated products that are generated and consumed on a national scale, nor pirated digital products that are disseminated on the Internet.
The problem is global and Ecuador is no stranger to it. Another international report has identified the bay of Guayaquil as the place where a variety of counterfeit and pirated products are found.
The report of the Office of the Foreign Trade Representative of the United States, in 2016, when removing Ecuador from its piracy list, said: “Although the protection of rights continues to be weak (including markets such as the bay in Guayaquil), reforms in the Penal Code in 2015 that restored some procedures and criminal sanctions against counterfeiting and piracy on a commercial scale, as well as Ecuador’s willingness to collaborate with the United States, are positive steps. “
Thus, counterfeit products reduce the profits of formal companies. (I)