The International Air Cargo Association (TIACA) has added its voice to the cause, condemning the growing problem of goods that infringe Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), and calling for Customs authorities to bring together rights holders, service providers, and regulators for a working dialogue in a new Position Paper published today.
Goods that infringe IPR account for a growing proportion of international trade, estimated at over US$250 billion by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
TIACA’s Paper explains that the air cargo industry plays a vital role in the interdiction of counterfeit shipments and in investigations of illicit trade and that, as intermediaries, the industry’s role is distinct from that of other parties.
The air cargo industry should be recognised as one piece in a three-pronged approach to combatting goods that infringe IPR, working alongside rights holders and Customs authorities, TIACA said.
“The industry’s cooperation with law enforcement agencies contributes to the increase in seizures by government agencies,” said Doug Brittin, secretary general, TIACA.
“However, each party needs to acknowledge its role and limitations. Air cargo industry members are not law enforcement agencies, and our role is necessarily limited by this reality.
“Any potential liability for air cargo industry members should be limited to instances where air cargo operators have actual knowledge of receiving or handling IPR infringing goods and have failed to take action based on that knowledge,” he said.
The Position Paper was put together by TIACA’s Market Access and Trade Facilitation Subcommittee and approved by the TIACA Board, which includes members from across the air freight industry.
The full version is available on the TIACA website by clicking here.