Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Notorious fakes markets in SE Asia

The US government USTR's Special 301 Review introduced a new category some years ago, called Notorious Markets which refers to retail or online markets that deal in infringing goods and services which facilitate and sustain global piracy and counterfeiting. Jakarta's Harco Glodok and Bangkok's Panthip Plaza shopping areas have featured for many years as places the local authorities are unable or unwilling to take action against in South East Asia.

In its December 2012 review of notorious markets the US gave credit to the Philippines government's enforcement efforts at the Quiapo Shopping District, which has reduced the number of counterfeit and pirated goods available for sale in this marketplace. Quiapo is well known for the sale of fake DVDs and CDs and the Optical Media Board has been undertaking raids for several years there to try to reduce the overt sales in the streets. The Philippines' OMB only deals in optical media disk enforcement, but it has been far more successful than other enforcement bodies like the NBI and Police which deal with other products.  
Meanwhile the USTR added eight zones to its list of areas under scrutiny in Thailand. These eight are MBK Center, Chatuchak market, Siam Square, Sukhumvit Rd and Patpong night market all in Bangkok; then Karon beach and Patong in Phuket; IT City in Pattaya; and Rong Klua market at the Aranyaprathet border crossing with Cambodia. The Thai government has since announced that it will target these areas with more enforcement.


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