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Industries lose billions on counterfeit products

Analysis

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The budgets of European Union countries lose approximately EUR 14.27 billion a year in revenues due to counterfeit goods, the Polish confederation Lewiatan said, according to a report by the Warsaw Business Journal.

As the organization points out, European competitiveness is linked to research and development, innovation, and intellectual property rights.

"The phenomenon of counterfeiting, infringing intellectual property rights, has serious negative consequences for the economy of the European Union as it reduces the incentive to innovate and inhibits foreign direct investment. Moreover, it often contributes to the destruction of jobs and enables the creation of an illegal economic system that is under control by criminal groups," the release, cited by the Warsaw Business Journal, reads.

Lewiatan reported that the sectors most exposed to counterfeiting of cosmetics and personal care products, wines and spirits, pharmaceuticals, and the toys and games sector lose nearly EUR 18 billion in sales value as a result of counterfeiting goods. EUIPO's recent counterfeit report shows that the biggest growth is in the cosmetics and personal care sector. In these sectors, Poland loses EUR 433.9 million every year. According to Elżbieta Dziuba from the Lewiatan, counterfeiting of goods, mainly the practice of counterfeiting plant protection products, also causes serious damage to the environment.

Polish Confederation Lewiatan (previously Polish Confederation of Private Employers Lewiatan) was established in January 1999 as a nation-wide representation of employers to the state and trade unions. 

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