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EUIPO-OECD joint study on misuse of containerised maritime transport for trade in counterfeit goods
22/02/2021
Over the years, international trade has grown considerably and the increase in counterfeit trade has come as an inevitable side effect, with maritime transport being a major channel for the shipping of counterfeit goods. The just released EUIPO-OECD joint study provides an in depth analysis of the scale of misuse of containers for this illicit trade.

The research shows that 80% of international trade is operated by sea transport as container ships boost efficiency and reduce the costs of international trade. Nevertheless, containers are also the major channel to transport counterfeit goods as 56% of the total value of seized counterfeits are shipped via this means, especially from East Asia. In particular, China accounts for 79% of the total value of containers containing fakes seized worldwide.

The study also provides other relevant information such as what types of fake products are traded in containers ships, where these counterfeits are produced, which geographic markets are targeted, which ports of entry are most often used for containers with counterfeits, how products are transported in container ships without being intercepted.

Since less than 2% of containers are physically inspected, maritime transport is considered a significant opportunity for criminal networks. This is the reason why the report considers the need for counterfeits to be a key priority for customs officials with search and inspection techniques and tools better tailored to detect fakes.

To read the full joint study, please click here.

To read the executive summary, please click here.

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ECTA is one of the leading organisations within the European Union that strongly works for the improvement of the IP system by collaborating with relevant Institutions (e.g. European Commission, WIPO, EUIPO, etc.), conducting transparent analysis and sharing high-quality knowledge on a wide variety of IP topics.
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