|Visitors examine products on display at the exhibit on genuine and counterfeit goods held at the Giang Vo Exhibition and Fair Centre in Ha Noi yesterday. — VNA/VNS Vu Sinh
HA NOI (VNS) — Businesses and producers should provide comprehensive product information to prevent the illegal trade in counterfeit goods, as it is difficult to differentiate genuine from fake items.
Do Thang Hai, deputy minister of Industry and Trade, made this statement at an exhibit on genuine and counterfeit goods held at the Giang Vo Exhibition and Fair Centre here yesterday.
"Smuggling, fake goods and trade fraud have complicated the situation with increasingly sophisticated tricks," Hai said.
For this reason, businesses should co-operate with authorities in fighting smuggling and, instead of merely providing general information about their products, should carry out specific measures to help consumers determine if goods are genuine, he added.
Figures from the ministry's Market Watch Department showed that authorities nationwide have conducted spot checks and imposed fines on nearly 90,000 cases of violations related to counterfeit goods each year.
In the first nine months of this year alone, the authorities conducted 119,651 investigations, a nine-per cent year-on-year increase, and imposed fines worth VND187.8 billion (US$8.9 million) on 63,978 cases of violations, a 12-per cent year-on-year increase.
However, the department said the figures reflected the extent of counterfeit goods production in the country, as well as the reality that both consumers and enterprises have suffered losses.
The exhibit revealed that hundreds of products, ranging from shampoo to high-class items such as mobile phones and household products, could be counterfeit.
Hoang Minh Tung, managing director of Nguyen Dat Locks and Hardware Company, a producer of locks, said several of the company's products had been copied and sold as genuine items.
The company, Tung added, actively co-operated with market watch and economic police forces to protect consumers' rights and prevent the production and sale of counterfeit goods.
"The fight against fake goods and trade fraud should receive co-operation from several parties, among which businesses assume the main responsibility," he remarked.
Current laws and regulations require businesses to participate in resolving cases of intellectual property rights violations, as they have enough legal basis to protect their own rights and clarify violations. Authorities find it hard to resolve cases of violations without co-operation from companies.
Nguyen Trong Tin, Market Watch Department deputy head, said his office created several plans with a variety of solutions in the fight against smuggling and trade fraud.
"The department has increased public awareness of this fight and has asked enterprises to refrain from trading fake goods," Tin added.
The exhibit, which the department and the EU-MUTRAP projects jointly organised, has showcased products of 11 domestic and foreign companies and has witnessed the participation of provincial market watch departments from here as well as HCM City, Da Nang and Nghe An. — VNS