A new report on the crime effects of smoking demonstrates that there would be an increase in counterfeit cigarettes, smuggling, and hard-line new rules could be counter-productive, argues Milan-based professor Ernesto Savona.
Cigarette smuggling and fake designer goods will top the agenda when Europe's Anti-Fraud Commissioner Algirdas Šemeta meets Chinese officials in Shanghai this week. The commissioner told EurActiv the EU has an "enormous problem" with illegal goods entering the European market from China.
Cigarette smuggling and fake designer goods will top the agenda when Europe's Anti-Fraud commissioner Algirdas Šemeta meets Chinese officials in Shanghai this week. The commissioner told EurActiv the EU has an "enormous problem" with illegal goods entering the European market from China.
A Russia-based online pharmacy has been using the logo of a high-profile European pharmacists' lobby group to claim their products are endorsed by the Brussels-based organisation, EurActiv has learned.
New technology designed to combat counterfeit drugs has been successfully trialled by pharmacists in Sweden, as a new EU directive on tackling fake medicines makes its way through the European Parliament.
The European Commission attempted to dispel rumours today (22 March) regarding draconian new anti-counterfeiting laws being negotiated under the global Anti-Counterfeiting and Trade Agreement (ACTA) talks.
Counterfeiting seizures at the EU's external borders have increased by 17%, with the largest share coming from China, causing an increasing threat to the health and safety of European citizens, the Commission says.
The Commission wants member states to give it a mandate to negotiate a new agreement with its major trading partners, aimed at raising the standard of global intellectual property rights (IPR) protection and tackling the rising and increasingly problematic trade in counterfeit goods, it announced on 23 October.
Meeting with his Chinese counterpart, EU Trade Commissioner Peter Mandelson warned that China could face retaliation unless it removes "indefensible" trade barriers that are partly to blame for Europe's ballooning trade deficit with the Asian giant.
The Parliament has narrowly backed a historical but controversial Directive that would force member states to harmonise their penal codes - for the first time ever - in order to combat counterfeiting and piracy across Europe.
The issue of organised crime has, since the 2004 Madrid bombings and the 2005 London attacks, taken a back seat to the overriding priority of the fight against terrorism. However, drugs and human trafficking are still policy priorities.
The EU is seeking to improve the security of travel documents to fight against terrorism and illegal immigration. Proposals are being discussed to include biometric identifiers in documents for third country nationals (visa and residence permits) and EU citizens' passports.