Kenya losing billions annually to counterfeit

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Kenya is losing over KSh100B ($939.2 million) in revenue to counterfeit businesses annually, according to a recent report.   The report released by the Anti-Counterfeit Authority (ACA) prepared to determine the extent and magnitude of illicit trade noted that between October 2019 and February 2020, government revenue lost in 2018 stood at KSh102.99 billion ($967.3 million) up from KSh101.23 billion ($$950.78 million) in 2017.  The hardest hit is the manufacturing sector which is under a crippling threat.  The situation got so bad that President Kenyatta issued a warning to importers trying to thrive from importation of counterfeit goods.  “Counterfeits are a major hindrance to the development of the local manufacturing sector  denying millions of young Kenyans employment opportunities,” President Kenyatta said.  Also Read: Kenya's fight against counterfeits targets USD2 million annually Counterfeiting is a global supply chain problem.   Counterfeiting and piracy are highly pervasive across countries and sectors, representing a multi-billion-dollar industry globally that continues to grow. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), estimates that the value of international and domestic trade of counterfeit and pirated goods range between US$923 billion – KSh1.13 trillion in 2013 and is expected to grow to between US$1.90 - $2.81 billion come year 2022. This represents between 5% and 7% of the world trade. This is a very conservative estimation, since it did not include pirated digital products. 

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Yvonne Kawira is an award winning journalist with an interest in matters, regional trade, tourism, entrepreneurship and aviation. She has been practicing for six years and has a degree in mass communication from St Paul’s University.

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