A new French public service campaign is reminding tourists to steer clear of counterfeits.
The ads, which are the work of French luxury goods group Comite Colbert, inform readers that buying imitation goods in France carries a maximum penalty of three years in jail and a € 300,000 fine. The campaign’s images were provided by leading luxury labels including Cartier, Christian Dior, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton. Each graphic is displayed alongside a playful, memorable slogan.
Some ten thousand posters will be displayed prominently in France’s 18 airports this summer, ready and waiting to catch the eyes of the nation’s visitors. The measure hopes to curb France’s booming counterfeit industry, which is thought to cost the country around 6 billion euros, the equivalent of $7.5 billion, every year. The practice also has a negative effect on an estimated eight out of 10 of the continent’s business. Half of all Europeans also believe that counterfeiting discourages legitimate firms from releasing new products into the marketplace.
The advertising campaign is just one of Comite Colbert’s planned attacks on the counterfeit market. It’s also just signed an agreement with the French postal service and many other leading shipping companies to prevent the nation’s citizens buying imitation goods online. It still needs banks and payment service providers to join the program, but it’s certainly a step in the right direction.
Are commercials the best way to stamp out the counterfeit trade, or does France need to take more drastic measures?