Wednesday, December 07, 2005

How Big a Problem?
There's an oft-repeated quote, attribtued to various sources, that counterfeits make up 7-8% of world trade. Rather than rely on a top-down, hard-to-validate number, we look for bottom-up, recent fact based evidence.
  • Michelin estimated that 50,000-70,000 countfeit tyres have been sold in Europe in the last 18 months at half the price of those made by Michelin. They plan to take action against any distributors found selling fakes as Michelins. It's not clear how they will police the 5,000 distributors or detect fakes.
  • Denso estimates it has losses of several million dollars a year from counterfeit spark plugs .
  • This data rich report reviewed worldwide counterfeit enforcement activity (investigations, raids, seizures, arrests, charges, convictions, sentences, civil litigation ) for October 2005. This data is new:
"... 18 million pirated items originating from China worth $13 Million were seized from 120 consignments in the 10 day period. If the operation was to continue year round, it would equate to 175 fully loaded Boeing 747 cargo aircraft entering the EU annually with goods valued at $500 Million. If customs organizations would release reports on individual seizures, the public would be more informed about the scope of the problem and dangers that items such as counterfeit drugs, sunglasses, mobile phone batteries and razorblades pose to the public."