Extracts from the statement by László Kovács on 2007 Customs seizures of counterfeit goods at the EU's external border

Type: Report   Reference: I-057327   Duration: 10:14:48  Lieu:
End production: 19/05/2008   First transmission: 19/05/2008
Statistics just published by the European Commission relating to counterfeit and piracy show a significant increase in customs activity in 2007. In 2007, customs registered over 43,000 cases of fake goods seized at the EU's external border, compared to 37,000 in 2006. This results notably from improved cooperation between customs and industry, enabling customs to better target suspected shipments and to recognize counterfeit goods. Despite this, the number of articles seized decreased from 2007's peak of 128 million articles to around 79 millions. This is due to a growing number of seizures involving smaller quantities of counterfeit and pirated articles. However, cigarettes and clothing continue to be faked in large quantities and there has been a worrying increase in sectors that are potentially dangerous to consumers (medicines, electrical equipment, personal care products).

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10:11:25 Title 00:00:04
10:11:30 Arrival of László Kovács, Member of the EC in charge of Taxation and Customs Union, in the press room (2 shots) 00:00:09
10:11:39 László Kovács (in ENGLISH) saying that counterfeiting and piracy are serious legal problems as they infringe upon the intellectual property rights; countefeiting and piracy are also serious economic and financial problems as they undermine the revenue of the Member States and the revenue of the manufacturers of the original products; they also endanger jobs in the EU industries; but furthermore, countefeiting is a serious threat to the safety, to the health and even to the life of the EU citizens and consumers 00:00:41
10:12:20 Cutaway 00:00:05
10:12:25 László Kovács (in ENGLISH) saying that there are 4+1 lines of defense against counterfeiting; the first is to cut off production; the second is to stop distribution of fake goods in the domestic markets, so this to introduce or improve control of exports to the EU countries; the fourth is the control of imports at the internal borders; and the +1 is the control of the domestic markets in the Member States 00:00:39
10:13:04 Cutaway 00:00:05
10:13:09 László Kovács (in ENGLISH) saying that he emphasized to the Chinese Minister that the EU expects commitments and actions from the Chinese side, and that progress should be reflected by better results in the EU market; they have also introduced a pilot program in 2007 on smart and secure tradeness in three ports: the second largest port in China, the number 1 in Europe (Rotterdam), and one in the United Kingdom; and the first experiences are favorable and show that it is a good way to improve trade facilitation and security at the same time 00:00:41
10:13:50 Cutaway 00:00:06
10:13:56 László Kovács (in ENGLISH) saying that in "Foodstuffs and beverages", Turkey is the number one, is the main source; for "Cosmetics and personal care products", it is Georgia; while for "Medicines", these are India, the United Arab Emirates and Switzerland 00:00:16
10:14:12 Cutaway 00:00:06
10:14:18 László Kovács (in ENGLISH) saying that the name of Switzerland as one of the flagship countries as far as pharmaceutical industry is concerned, is a kind of guarantee for the customers that they can safely buy and use these medicines coming from Switzerland; so that is even more dangerous than when it is coming from China or from the United Arab Emirates or from other countries which are not considered to be the flagships of pharmaceutical industry 00:00:30
10:14:48 Cutaways (2 shots) 00:00:09
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