Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Chile: counterfeit products exceed half a million

Today’s front page of the Mercurio newspaper reports that in 2009 more than half a million counterfeit goods were seized in shops and malls.

According to the head of the Brigade of Intellectual Property, Patricio Bascuñán, PlayStation games is at the top of the list with over 100 thousand counterfeit products. They are followed by sportswear bearing marks such as Nike and Adidas.

Following investigations it was found that the goods reach the country from China, through an importer. However, it is also recognised that there were cases in which the store owners bought the products online.

Mr Bascuñán explains that one of the biggest concerns is related to health. He gives an example of cylinders of oxygen which were seized – even though they were bearing the mark Indura, they were filled by another company. That said, he says that it is uncertain if they had the adequate quality and purity for human use.

He adds that there are also unusual cases such as 40 thousand bottles of Coca-Cola, from China. The packaging of the 600 ml bottle did not resemble the original and the label was written in English and did not specify the ingredients. The studies found that the substance was not toxic, but it did not have the ingredients of the original drink.

Lastly, he mentions that 113 people were arrested for importing or selling counterfeit goods in 2009 - double the figure of that in 2008.

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