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Counterfeit Manufacturing: Electronic Equipment

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills written question – answered on 24th June 2016.

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Photo of Carolyn Harris Carolyn Harris Labour, Swansea East

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps his Department is taking to prevent counterfeit electrical goods being sold in the UK; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Ed Vaizey Ed Vaizey Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy (Jointly with Department for Business, Innovation and Skills), Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy (Jointly with Department for Culture Media and Sport)

The Intellectual Property Office (IPO) works closely with law enforcement, government and industry partners such as the Police IP Crime Unit, Trading Standards and Border Force to prevent counterfeit electrical goods from being sold in the UK. In 2014-15, Border Force detained over 1.6 million IP infringing items in total. Industry initiatives such as the Real Deal have also reduced the availability of counterfeit electrical goods at local markets.

In February 2015 the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills pledged an extra £400,000 to help trading standards officers prevent dangerous goods, many of which are counterfeit, being sold in the UK, and this includes £182,000 for its ports and borders project which is improving surveillance at Southampton and Felixstowe ports. This has resulted in 487,000 products being intercepted at the border and a further 1,100,575 non-compliant products identified and addressed.

Ongoing joint enforcement initiatives also include Operation Jasper, which is tackling the use of social media to sell counterfeit goods, and work by National Trading Standards and the IPO Intelligence Hub to deal with the risks posed by ‘fulfilment houses’ that supply many items purchased online.

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