China leads the world in counterfeit, pirated products -U.S. report

WASHINGTON, Jan 31 (Reuters) – China leads the world in counterfeit and pirated products, the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) Katherine Tai said in a report on Tuesday that pointed to WeChat, China’s most popular chat app, as “one of the largest. platforms for counterfeit goods”.

“Counterfeit and pirated goods from China, along with goods shipped from China to Hong Kong, accounted for 75% of the value of counterfeit and pirated goods seized by US Customs and Border Protection in year 2021,” the US government’s latest report on the “popular market.” added.

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The US government has identified 39 online marketplaces and 33 physical marketplaces that allegedly engage in or facilitate trademark infringement or copyright piracy.

“This includes continuing to identify the WeChat e-commerce ecosystem as one of the largest platforms for counterfeit goods in China,” he added.

WeChat is China’s most popular chat app with more than a billion active users and is owned by Chinese technology company Tencent Holdings Limited (0700.HK).

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The report said that WeChat provided an e-commerce environment that facilitated the distribution and sale of counterfeit products to users of the WeChat platform in general.

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China’s online marketplaces AliExpress, Baidu Wangpan, DHGate, Pinduoduo and Taobao remain among the list of popular marketplaces, along with China’s seven physical marketplaces “which are increasingly using brick and mortar stores to support the online sale of fakes,” the USTR office said on Tuesday.

The U.S. government has added e-commerce sites run by Tencent and Chinese technology giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd ( 9988.HK ) to a list of prominent markets in early 2022.

“The popular market list is an important tool that encourages the private sector and trading partners to take action against these harmful practices,” Tai said on Tuesday.

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The Chinese government said at the time that it disagreed with the US government’s decision to add some e-commerce sites to the list, calling the move “irresponsible.”

Tencent also said it disagreed with the decision and Alibaba said it would continue to work with government agencies to resolve intellectual property protection issues across its platforms.

Kanishka Singh reports in Washington; Written by Josie Kao

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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