OECD-EUIPO 2019 Report on Counterfeiting

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) have published their 2019 report on trends in counterfeiting. It is based on data collected from 2014 to 2016. The previous report, based on data from 2011 to 2013, was published in 2016.

Overall, the authors of the report observed a significant increase in the volume of counterfeiting (pp. 11 and 45):

  • 2013: 461 billion dollars, or 2.5% of world trade;
  • 2016: 509 billion dollars, or 3.3% of world trade.

These data are all the more revealing as, during the 2013-2016 period, world trade declined (p.11).

The counterfeit market is becoming sprawling. Few sectors of the industry can claim to be spared from the counterfeiting phenomenon (pp. 30 and 43).

OECD-EUIPO, Trends in Trade in Counterfeit and Pirated Goods, March 2019, p. 43. ISSN : 26175835 (en ligne) / https://doi.org/10.1787/26175835

The report notes that sectors such as toys and games or optics have become more vulnerable (p.54).

The report confirms many more facts and trends, including:

  • the source of the counterfeit goods remains largely Chinese, although the share of the Chinese volume declined in favor of Hong Kong, the Pearl of the Orient being considered as a major hub for parcels shipments (pp. 40);
  • the propensity of some countries to export counterfeits remains marked by the presence of China (1) and Hong Kong (2), while Turkey (4) gives up its third place in the United Arab Emirates (3) (pp. 40 and 41).
  • the companies most affected by the phenomenon of counterfeiting are headquartered in the United States, France, Switzerland, Italy, South Korea, the United Kingdom, Spain, and Luxembourg;
  • companies headquartered in Singapore, Hong Kong, and China are becoming targets of counterfeiters, placing them in particularly difficult situations (p.32);
  • transit is facilitated by free trade zones;
  • the growing use of counterfeit parcels: 69% of seizures, an increase of six points from the previous report (page 33). However, the use of the postal channel is only 11% in value (56% for the marine route) (page 34); and
  • counterfeit goods that can be hazardous to health, life, and the environment are constantly increasing (page 32).