Swiss eye simpler processes for customs in counterfeits fight

Switzerland’s Federal Council has started a consultation on a proposal to make it easier for customs to destroy counterfeit goods in small consignments.

A new procedure aims to reduce the administrative effort by giving the Federal Customs Administration (FCA) more leeway for essential checks.

At the moment, brand owners can request the FCA to withhold suspicious goods at the border and to destroy them if the buyer does not expressly object to their destruction, but this takes a lot of time. Under the new scheme, the brand owner would only be informed that their consignment has been withheld if the purchaser objects to the destruction. More information is available here.

“These checks are essential – the importation of small consignments from Asia into Switzerland increased six-fold between 2014 and 2018,” says the Federal Council. “The Swiss economy is disproportionately affected, with Swiss owners of trade marks coming fourth in the world rankings of companies affected by counterfeiting.”

The consultation on the introduction of the simplified procedure was started January 15 and will run until April 30.

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