Taxation and Customs Union

EU Customs Action Plan

Commission initiatives for combating counterfeiting and other IPR infringements

The European Commission and the EU Member States are active to ensure a proper enforcement of intellectual property rights (IPR) at the external border.  

EU Customs Action Plan to combat IPR infringements (2013-2017)

On 10 December 2012 the Council adopted a Resolution on the EU Customs Action Plan to Combat IPR Infringements for the Years 2013-2017.

The strategic objectives of this Action Plan are the following:

  • Effectively implementing and monitoring the new EU legislation on customs enforcement of IPR;
  • Tackling major trends in trade of IPR infringing goods;
  • Tackling trade of IPR infringing goods throughout the international supply chain;
  • Strengthening cooperation with the European Observatory and law enforcement authorities on infringements of IPRs.

A detailed Roadmap will be prepared by the Commission in co-operation with Member States experts to implement and monitor the Action Plan effectively and efficiently.

U Customs Action Plan to combat IPR infringements (2009-2012)

On 16 March 2009 the Council adopted a Resolution on the EU Customs Action Plan to Combat IPR Infringements for the Years 2009-2012. It includes about fifty targeted measures to be implemented by the Commission and/or the Members States, with a particular focus on:

  • improving and where necessary modifying, existing IPR legislation;
  • strengthening operational cooperation between customs in the EU;
  • improving cooperation with right-holders;
  • developing further international cooperation on IPR enforcement;
  • improving publicity and awareness and
  • responding to the problem of Internet sales and delivering ad hoc training to customs officers.

In line with the Council Resolution, the Plan foresees, among others

 The Commission, in cooperation with the Member States,  prepared a report on the implementation of the Action Plan that was published on 10 December 2012.

Seminar on "Fight Against Counterfeiting – IPR and the Internet"

The sale of IPR infringing goods over the Internet is a key challenge for customs. The scale of this phenomenon is growing constantly and customs are faced with increasing traffic of small consignments of counterfeit and pirated goods.

In October 2010, a seminar was organised in Paris by the French customs administration and the European Commission in the framework of the Customs 2013 Programme. EU Member States, Turkey, Serbia and representatives of the private sector participated in this event. The objectives of the seminar were to gather information on how Member States tackle this issue and to identify ways to improve the efficiency of customs controls in this area. The main outcome of the seminar was the adoption of the "Recommandations de La Villette". These Recommendations outline a common approach to tackle counterfeiting on the Internet, based on strengthened cooperation and the creation of specialised units in each Member State. The Commission created an expert group to deepen the work on this issue.