The global trade in counterfeit goods costs the UK billions of pounds in lost sales and missing tax revenues, according to a new report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
The trade in fake goods also caused the loss of over 86,000 UK jobs, the report added.
According to the OECD, the value of counterfeit and pirated British goods sold worldwide was £16.2 billion in 2016, up from £13.4 billion in 2013. UK goods targeted by counterfeiters include perfumes, cosmetics, clothing, footwear, leather goods, telecoms equipment, electronic goods, cars and motorbikes.
In terms of UK imports, the report estimated that fake goods brought into the UK were worth £13.6 billion in 2016. A combination of trade in fake British products and imports of counterfeit goods to the UK cost £4 billion in lost tax revenues.
Commenting on the report, Marcos Bonturi, Public Governance Director at the OECD, said: ‘These findings clearly show the need for continued vigilance and for the strengthening of measures to counter illicit trade in the UK and abroad. ‘Good governance is an essential element of this equation. Countries need to work together if they want to win the fight against illicit trade and against all other illicit activities linked to it.’
Food for thought whilst you are shopping for the perfect Christmas gift…if it seems too cheap to be true, then it probably is!