KARACHI: Customs Enforcement South has launched a campaign against import, distribution and sale of counterfeited products in the country in a bid to support Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) and deter trade in counterfeit goods.
Chief Collector Enforcement South Wasif Memon has advised the field formation to keep strict vigilance on the import of such goods as well as identify the places from where such goods are distributed and sold to the consumers.
Collector Preventive Dr. Fareed Iqbal Qureshi has assigned Deputy Collector Muhammad Faisal to undertake a campaign against IPR violations.
Subsequently, Anti-Smuggling Organization (ASO) of MCC Preventive Karachi headed by Deputy Collector Muhammad Faisal seized counterfeit watches and goggles worth Rs2.473 million. In another operation counterfeit watches of famous leading brands (Rado, Rolex, Citizen, Fossil, Omega, Seiko, Burberry etc.) worth Rs10.6 million were recovered from the City Station. Three persons were also arrested and FIR was lodged.
It may be mentioned here that a large quantity of counterfeit products including watches, goggles, mobile phones, cosmetics, toiletries, electronics and edibles etc. have flooded the local markets while that an ordinary man cannot distinguish between the original and fake product.
An official said that such goods were imported and smuggled into the country, mostly from China, and these were also being sold through online portals. Several big marts, offering abnormal discounts, are also involved in selling such products.
It is estimated that the value of global trade in counterfeit and pirated goods may rise to half a trillion dollars a year. The entire world is tightening regulations and enforcement measures to counter trade of counterfeit products.
Last week USA initiated a crackdown on counterfeit products on third-party online marketplaces. The move comes as US President Trump and his economic advisers were locked in trade talks with China that the president said aimed to reduce the theft of U.S. intellectual property. China is known to be the largest producer of counterfeit products and infringement of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).
Pakistan Customs is geared up and dumping places of such goods are being identified, which would be followed by raids to recover these counterfeit/smuggled goods.