EU Commission publishes its Annual Report on Customs Detention of IP infringing articles

The European Commission has just published its annual report on customs detentions of articles suspected of infringing intellectual property rights. Foodstuffs are at the top of the list of detained articles (24 %), followed by toys (11 %), cigarettes (9 %), other goods ( 9%) and clothing (7 %).  Products for daily use (i.e. body care articles, medicines, toys, electrical household goods) accounted for 43.3 % of the total number of detained articles.

65% of all detained articles entered the EU via the maritime route, usually in large consignments. Air traffic accounts for 14% of fake articles, followed by courier traffic and postal traffic which together account for 11% (mainly made up of consumer goods ordered online such as shoes, clothing, bags and watches).

China remains the main country of origin for fake goods entering the EU. The highest amount of fake clothing originated from Turkey while the most counterfeit mobile phones and accessories, ink cartridges and toners, CDs/DVDs and labels, tags and stickers entered the EU from Hong Kong and China. India was the top country of origin for fake, and potentially harmful, medicines. In 90% of detentions, goods were either destroyed or a court case was initiated to determine an infringement or as part of criminal procedures.

Important note on the UK data:

These statistics are based on data submitted by member states so it is worth noting (as we reported back from the last IP Crime Group meeting) that the UK data shows drops in seizures in 2016 (49%) and 2017 (29%) but HMRC have admitted that this due to seizures not being recorded (due to a ‘lack of resource’) rather than action not being taken at the borders.

Action: The Alliance for IP are following up with the IPO and HMRC on this to get an update on how and when this issue will be fixed and also whether the correct data for 2016 and 2017 can be submitted and the reports amended.