Counterfeit Chinese Goods Undermining the UK, Says OECD


According to a new 152-page report issued by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the counterfeit goods coming from China and Hong Kong are posing serious threats to not only the economic growth but also shaking up citizens’ trust in the government of United Kingdom.

The last comprehensive data was available for 2013 wherein counterfeit goods accounted for about £9.2 billion. These fake goods ate up to 4% percent of imports and almost 2% percent of total sales of UK merchants and manufacturers. This seriously affected 60,000 jobs and resulted in a potential loss of almost £3.8 billion in tax revenue.

According to a study carried out by the OECD’s Task Force on Countering Illicit Trade, electronic and electrical equipment, clothing and footwear were the topmost fake products. Almost half the goods, produced were made to deceive consumers, who would have bought them believing them to be genuine.

The report provides little or no information on supply chains and the manufacturing whereabouts of these counterfeit goods and focuses primarily on an international set of customs seizure data and interviews with trade and customs experts. But it shows that the major share of fake goods arriving in the UK comes from Hong Kong, India, Pakistan and other countries.

OECD’s report clearly points out that counterfeiting poses dangers for health, safety and privacy. It may also lower consumer satisfaction, especially when low-quality fake goods are purchased unknowingly. The rising counterfeiting brings revenue losses while trademark infringements continually degrade brand value for intellectual property rights holders and their authorised vendors.