‘Total annual value of counterfeit products could hit US$1.7 trillion by 2015’- Report

A 2011 study by Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) has put the total annual value of all counterfeit merchandise worldwide at nearly US$800 billion. This trend is predicted to reach US$1.7 trillion by 2015 if unabated.
In Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) the market for printing supplies is nearly 30 billion Euros and printing supplies are seen as one example of a growing international trade in counterfeit product which is posing serious implications for the world economy.
In a fact sheet released after a HP roundtable discussion held recently to discuss role of intellectual property (IP) as a catalyst for economic, social and cultural prosperity, the report said, “The trend is especially troubling in areas of the world where respect for patents and intellectual property could be improved. According to the World Economic Forum, Nigeria ranks 104th out of 142 countries in the protection of intellectual property rights. Within the East Africa Community (EAC), it’s estimated that counterfeit and inferior goods cost regional governments more than $500 million annually in lost tax receipts.”
The white paper reads further, “Innovation and creativity aren’t confined to the arts or sciences, however; they are also present in business. Global demand for patents rose from 800,000 applications in the early 1980s to 1.8 million in 2009, showing how important intellectual property has become to business.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the Information and Communications Technology field, where a company’s ability to compete - and the livelihood of the thousands of people it employs - literally depends on its ability to create new products and services and to protect its ownership of the same.
HP, for example, is one of the biggest owners of intellectual property, with a portfolio of over 37,000 patents. Many of these are held by HP’s Printing and Personal Systems Group (PPS), which manufactures not just printers and scanners but the ink and toner to supply them. Propriety HP toner and ink cartridge technology, backed by decades of research and development, has achieved an excellent reputation for quality that counterfeiters try to exploit with inferior versions camouflaged in fake packaging.”
Through its Anti-counterfeiting Program, HP actively educates its customers and partners to be vigilant against fake printing supplies. It also cooperates closely with local and global law enforcement to detect and dismantle illegal operations that produce counterfeit HP printing components.
Across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) over the last four years, HP has conducted nearly 1,000 investigations, resulting in over 600 enforcement actions (raids and seizures by authorities) and nearly 8 million units of counterfeit products and components seized, thus preventing them from being sold in the EMEA marketplace and beyond.