Video piracy, on the rise in Italy and the United States, costs the American film business close to $ 224 million a year, Jack Valenti said yesterday.

Things aren’t much better in Italy, said Valenti, president of the Motion Picture Assn. of America.

“The pirates are winning and the Italians are the real losers,” Valenti said. Italian film officials estimate that between 35% and 40% of Italy’s homevideo market is illegal.

According to FAPAV, the Italian federation organized to combat video piracy, 80% of retail sellers and renters of videos in Italy are involved in some way in video piracy, resulting in $ 85 million in lost tax revenues each year.

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