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Number, Value of IPR Infringing Goods Seizures Increase in FY 2013

Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Sandler, Travis & Rosenberg Trade Report

U.S. Customs and Border Protection has released statistics showing that both the number and value of its intellectual property rights seizures increased in fiscal year 2013. Handbags and wallets continued to be the most seized commodity by value, China and Hong Kong accounted for nearly all of the value of IPR seizures, and seizures at express consignment and cargo facilities saw sharp increases.

Volume and Value of Seizures. The number of IPR seizures rose nearly 7% to 24,361 a year after falling 7.8% to 22,848. The value of IPR seizures in terms of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price jumped 38% to $1.74 billion and the average value per seizure rose 29.6% to $71,570. CBP notes that 35 exclusion order enforcement actions were taken in FY 2013, down from 68 a year earlier.

Commodities Seized. Handbags and wallets again topped the list of commodities seized by MSRP in FY 2013 ($700.2 million, up 37%, 40% of total seizures). Other categories ranking high in this area included watches and jewelry ($502.8 million, up 169%, 29% of the total), consumer electronics/parts ($145.9 million, up 39.7%, 8% of the total), wearing apparel/accessories ($116.2 million, down 12.7%, 7% of the total) and pharmaceuticals/personal care ($79.6 million, down 4.1%, 5% of the total). For the first time since FY 2005, footwear was not one of the top five commodities seized by value.

The top five categories of products seized by volume were wearing apparel and accessories (9,894, up 26.8%, 35% of the total), consumer electronics (5,656, up 44%, 20% of the total), handbags/wallets (2,223, down 17%, 8% of the total), pharmaceuticals/personal care (2,215, down 5.7%, 8% of the total), and watches/jewelry (1,729, down 21.3%, 6% of the total).

Source Countries. CBP made seizures from 74 economies in FY 2013, but China and Hong Kong together accounted for 93% of the total MSRP value of seizures, up from 84% in FY 2012. China alone represented 68% at $1.18 billion (up 30.3%) while the value of seizures from Hong Kong soared 180% to $437.5 million. Other top source countries by value included India ($20.7 million, up 194.6%), South Korea ($6.3 million, not on the list in FY 2012), and Singapore ($5.07 million, down 46%). New on the top 10 list this year are Vietnam, Great Britain, Bangladesh and Pakistan, while Canada, France, Peru, Mexico and Germany fell out of the top 10.


Shipping Environments. The MSRP value of IPR seizures rose significantly for express consignment facilities (up 147% to $364.6 million) and cargo facilities (up 58% to $1.1 billion) but fell for mail (down 4.6% to $76.5 million) and other (down 41.4% to $202.4 million) facilities. The number of seizures saw a similar trend, with an increase at express consignment (up 31.9% to 11,196) and cargo (up 8.4% to 1,654) facilities but decreases at mail (down 13.1% to 8,558) and other (down 0.9% to 2,953) facilities.

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