New Delhi– The Authentication Solutions Providers Association (ASPA) on Wednesday announced opening of India’s first international conference here on authentication solutions taking place over February 8-9.

The conference, along with an exhibition, is being held in association with trade fair organisers Messe Frankfurt India, when the demonetisation drive has shifted focus to the menace of counterfeiting.

“Spurred by rising cases of infringements, adulteration, foray of counterfeit products in India, Authentication Solutions Providers Association (ASPA) has joined hands with Messe Frankfurt India (MFI) to host India’s first International exhibition cum conference on authentication solutions,” ASPA said in a release here.

“The forum aims to raise awareness and bring together industry stakeholders and decision-making bodies at a platform to analyze the problem of counterfeiting in the country and provide the solutions to combat this menace,” it said.

Speaking on the occasion, Joint Secretary Department of Consumer Affairs P.V. Rama Sastry said: “Even as industry revenues take a major hit from counterfeits, the biggest loss is to the consumer.”

“According to sources, from counterfeiting activity, the Government of India incurred the loss of Rs 26,190 crore in 2011-12, which has increased to Rs 39,239 crore in 2013-14, reflecting a growth of 49.8 per cent in two years,” said ASPA President U.K. Gupta.

“Counterfeiting is a multi-billion-dollar business today and referred as to as the crime of 21st century. Even, the established link between terrorism and counterfeiting is exposed,” he added. (IANS)