EU piracy watch-list poised to name and shame fake cosmetics hubs

The upcoming EU list of counterfeit cosmetics is being embraced by legitimate industry

China is the world’s key producer of counterfeit perfumes and cosmetics, with Hong Kong the main transit hub

A European Commission plan to identify online and physical marketplaces outside the European Union (EU) where counterfeiting piracy or other forms of intellectual property (IP) abuse are common practices has brought hope to the cosmetics sector.

The legitimate industry sees the EU's upcoming Counterfeit and Piracy Watch-List as a way to minimise financial losses from pirates and smugglers.

And these losses are substantial; a study by EU police agency Europol and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) released last year estimated that €9.5bn is lost annually to legitimate EU goods traders in sales of legitimate cosmetics products, resulting in the loss of approximately 80,000 jobs.

Commission officials are currently analysing online and crime data as its officials draft a list.

"Once ready, the Watch-List will . . .

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