Between the months of March 2015 and September 2016, the
EU's Office for the Protection of Intellectual Property (EUIPO)
conducted an array of studies concerning losses incurred from the
sale of counterfeit products on an EU wide basis, focusing on each
and every Member State. It was recently reported that Malta's
losses amount to €43 million annually, with wine and spirits
interestingly exceeding the EU average. Ultimately, the main scope
of these studies is to provide a clearer picture for concerned
citizens, businesses and organizations with respect to the European
Union's economic losses connected to illegal activities.
Furthermore, with Christmas just around the corner, citizens ought
to be aware of the consequences of purchasing counterfeit
The studies carried out by the Office show that the millions are
continuously lost due to the sale of counterfeit products in a
variety of different sectors. The nine sectors that are mostly
affected are the following: spirits and wines, clothing, sports
goods, jewellery and watches, cosmetics and personal care,
handbags, footwear and accessories, and pharmaceuticals.
The European Observatory on infringements of Intellectual
Property Rights reckons that over €48 billion are lost on an
annual basis in all the aforementioned sectors as a result of the
filtration of counterfeit goods in the EU's market. Moreover, a
further €35 billion are lost on an annual basis across the 28
Member States as a result of the associated consequences of
counterfeiting and piracy. The EUIPO reveals that those lost sales
may also be interpreted as the loss of approximately 790,000 jobs
every year throughout the European Union.
Notably, back in November 2013, a comprehensive survey was
conducted to study the level of awareness and behaviour among
European Union citizens. The findings of this survey demonstrate
that although citizens are aware of the significance of
Intellectual Property, in most cases they also have a tendency to
brush aside the occurrence of infringements. Nevertheless, the
Observatory is currently determined to continue evaluating and
publishing its studies in order to acquaint citizens with the
seriousness relating to counterfeiting and piracy.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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