Fake Goods Flooding Denmark

A wave of fake branded goods from the Far East is flooding Denmark. In 2003, Danish customs nettet 20 mill DKK worth of counterfeit branded goods on their way to the consumers. This year, the amount is a whooping 156 million DKK. That’s a tenfold increase over less than two years.
       Danish customs authority is so alarmed by the finding that a special unit has been established, charged with investigating and intercepting the illegal shipments. 
       The special unit encourages Danes and others to inform them if they suspect a shipment is on its way to Denmark.
       “Trading in countefeit goods is an increasing problem,” states head of the task force Trine Dancygier, who is coordinating the Danish efforts within the EU framework of customs cooperation.
       “The EU cooperation makes it possible for us today target our actions better. It leads to larger confiscations,” she says.
       A special joint EU operation termed “FAKE” took place during ten days in May and on 7 November the result were made known. The operation targetted only products from China and the huge finding of faked goods were thus even more stunning. 
       • Nearly 500 000 kg of goods and over two million items infringing intellectual property rights were intercepted by EU customs authorities, in particular textiles, footwear, electronic equipment, medicines, cigarettes and other articles. 
       • Counterfeit products were detected in nearly a quarter of the containers selected for a physical or “scanner” check. 
       The joint operation by the 25 EU Member States was the first to be coordinated in the new permanent technical infrastructure of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).
       OLAF estimates that the percentage of counterfeit goods today accounts for 5 to 9% of world trade, depriving manufacturers of 200 to 300 billion Euros throughout the world. The public authorities also lose substantial tax revenue, mainly VAT but also customs duties, through an underground economy that directly affects the EU’s own resources and finances organised crime.

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

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