Brussels, Friday 20th May: The Coalition Against Illicit Trade (CAIT) today launches its white paper on The role of new technologies in combatting counterfeiting and illicit trade. The white paper advocates specific frameworks and technological solutions to ensure the integrity of the supply chain, as well as effective tracking and tracing of goods and products. CAIT is a business alliance dedicated to protecting brand-owners by fighting the trade of counterfeit and contraband goods, from pharmaceuticals to fragrances, and operates as a knowledge sharing hub for those developing innovative ways to tackle this global crime. CAIT was established to help foster enhanced co-operation among stakeholders, share best practice, and discuss practical solutions to the problem of illicit trade.
The white paper highlights the different solutions available to tackle illicit trade and presents a set of principles that would enable brands and policy makers to formalise what can be determined as industry most advanced practices. The white paper highlights how digitalisation has become the key driving force behind solution innovation and the ability to fight ever more sophisticated criminals. Consumers now expect to access information online, on the move via smartphones while brand owners require the ability to access real-time performance data. New technological developments across many industries are already making this a reality.
Reflecting the broad interests of its members, the paper is product agnostic, with the solutions applicable to the wide range of industries affected, including: pharmaceuticals, automotive parts, luxury goods, alcohol, tobacco, chemicals, cosmetics, toys, gemstones, watches and clothing, to name just a few. As well as damaging the revenues of brand owners, illicit trade funds serious organised crime and costs governments around the world untold billions in lost revenues – funds that could be used to build schools, provide healthcare, and cut taxes. In Europe alone, counterfeited and pirated goods are estimated to cost governments in excess of €85bn in lost revenue.
CAIT is determined to ensure innovation in the sector can flourish and this has informed the development of the guiding principles within the white paper. CAIT would like to see the adoption of commonly agreed standard-setting methodology with the involvement of recognised normalisation or standard setting independent bodies across affected industries. In conjunction, each industry sector concerned should be involved in the definition of which information should be collected and stored throughout the supply chain and make information accessible to relevant authorities.
Craig Stobie, Director Global Sector Management & Development at Domino, and one of CAIT’s founding members stated:
“The development of this white paper enables CAIT and its members to clarify in writing the core principles we believe will help address the global issue of counterfeit and contraband trade and highlight the different track and trace and authentication solutions available.
We don’t believe that there is one ‘silver bullet’ for fighting this global issue, given the different challenges faced across industries and geographies, but we do think that by proposing standardsetting methodology we can help frame the current debate to ensure we are best placed to use technology to tackle the criminals.”