About  the Directorate-General

The Directorate-General for the Fight against Counterfeiting-UIBM formulates the national policies of the fight against counterfeiting. In view of the serious impact which counterfeiting has on the macro-economy (national economic system) and the micro-economy (production sectors), anti-counterfeiting policies are a central element of industrial policy and contribute to supporting the competitiveness and innovation of Italian firms.

The principal areas of intervention are:

• support for firms in implementing prevention strategies to defend themselves against counterfeiting by protecting their intangibles with industrial property rights. This   support is provided through education and information initiatives (seminars, conferences, etc., dedicated to firms), and more tangibly through a system of subsidies for micro, small and medium sized firms for the use and exploitation of patents, trademarks and designs/models (the so-called “innovation package”)

• increasing the public's awareness of the consequences of counterfeiting. The initiatives taken in this area have involved a large number of institutions, including: primary and secondary schools (with educational initiatives organised in collaboration with the Education Ministry), universities (with the Giulio Natta degree award and introduction of courses on intellectual property), consumers (through initiatives conducted on the basis of a protocol of agreement with eight category associations) and the general public (through national and local communication campaigns)


• institutional coordination, both national (through participation in the National Anti-counterfeiting Council and holding of a series of round tables with representatives of specific production sectors), and international (participation in international agreements, such as the ACTA-Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement or the EU patent introduction agreement; strengthening of the initiatives taken by the Italian diplomatic representatives at the United Nations aimed at approaching counterfeiting as a criminal activity as well; collaboration with Italian Chambers of Commerce abroad to support domestic firms wishing to internationalise their activities)


• measurement of counterfeiting, aimed at quantifying counterfeiting activities on the basis of the work of the law enforcement agencies (consolidating the data on the volumes and value of goods seized in the IPERICO database), estimates of consumption and the number of consumers of counterfeited goods (Unioncamere surveyand and survey into public-consumer perception of counterfeiting, performed in collaboration with consumer associations), the impact on firms (Unioncamere survey) and on the domestic economy, in terms of lower GDP and tax revenue (Censis – DGLC-UIBM survey) and the involvement of organised crime (UNICRI – DGLC-UIBM survey)


• formulation of proposed new regulations or adaptation or amendment of current regulations (such as a review of the Rules of Enforcement of the Industrial Property Code)


• creation and promotion of initiatives for enforcement and territorial monitoring, including through joint funding of anti-counterfeiting projects and initiatives (see the ANCI – DGLC-UIBM agreement on this and, for on line counterfeiting, particularly in the drugs sector, see the initiative to protect consumer health involving closing down of two websites which sold medicinal products to Italian consumers illegally). A link to the website of the Competition and Market Watchdog (AGCM) is provided below.

 

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