Counterfeiting is a trillion-dollar illegal business having its presence in almost every part of the world. Today, counterfeiting is posing a threat to not just the consumers but also to the economic growth of the nations.
According to an OECD and EUIPO report, “Global sales of counterfeit and pirated goods have soared to 460 billion euros ($522 billion) a year, amounting to a whopping 3.3 per cent of world trade.”
The report also states the nations most affected by counterfeiting which includes the United States, Japan, South Korea and the EU states. However, the effects of counterfeiting are not just visible in developed countries but are also hampering the growth of the developing world.
Let’s discuss some of the impacts of counterfeiting on the economy of a country:
Evasion of taxes: Counterfeiting leads to evasion of taxes. The mammoth counterfeiting industry sells its products in the market without paying taxes to the government. This leads to a loss of the government exchequer and finally, the government is not able to spend enough on welfare projects and schemes.
Rise in unemployment: Since the counterfeit industry takes away the profits of credible companies, they are not able to recruit new employees. The financial instability of the industries creates massive unemployment which is linked indirectly to the problem of counterfeiting.
Diminishes foreign investment: It has been generally seen that countries with weak IP laws and poor regulatory measures become the breeding ground for counterfeit activities. Such countries blur their chances of foreign investments. Counterfeiting diminishes the chances of foreign direct investments and thus block the economic growth of a country.
Fuels other black-market activities: Counterfeiting fuels other black-market activities and is a lucrative business for organized criminals. With the money acquired from the sale of counterfeits, they fund their vast network, which is involved in drugs trafficking, human trafficking, illegal arms, prostitution etc.
Finally, we can conclude that counterfeiting has multiple negative effects, which are very harmful to the economic growth of the country if not checked on time by authorities and the respective governments of their countries.
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