Fake goods MoU to be signed with EuroCham

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The Ministry of Interior destroyed over 70,000 items of counterfeit goods in March. Hong Menea

The Ministry of Interior’s Anti-Counterfeit Products Committee is to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the European Chamber of Commerce (Eurocham) on Thursday “to combat importing, producing and distributing fake products in the Kingdom”.

Liv Sophanarith, Anti-Counterfeit Products Committee spokesman, said the MoU will help enforce stricter regulations on companies importing fake goods into Cambodia.

“We will help protect the market for European companies and their products in Cambodia from those selling products that violate their intellectual property,” Sophanarith said.

Last month, Minister of National Defence Tea Banh warned at the 14th Asean Health Ministers Meeting in Siem Reap that counterfeit and poor quality drugs had become a problem throughout the Asean region.

“Fake and poor quality medicine is worryingly spreading across the region and the globe, especially drugs advertised online without identifying a clear source and proper registration,” Banh said.

Sophanarith said the problems extend beyond medicine.

He said counterfeit products are frequently bought by Cambodians who neglect to check if items are registered with the ministry. He said the MoU would increase the flow of information to protect companies and buyers.

“Several different types of counterfeit goods are being sold in Cambodian markets, including foodstuffs, medicine and cosmetics.

In March, the Ministry of Interior destroyed over 70,000 items of counterfeit goods, including 106 types of medicine, 7,850kg of fertilisers and 5,220 bottles of fake Evian drinking water.

“We have seen fake items in our markets. Sometimes a product is considered counterfeit by the committee because it hasn’t been registered properly with the relevant ministries.

“The Anti-Counterfeit Products Committee leads a technical working group to various places to sample products to check if they are genuine,” Sophanarith said.

In March, the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) said that counterfeit products amounted to 3.3 per cent of global trade. It said the top producers of counterfeit products were China, Hong Kong, the UAE, Turkey, Singapore, Thailand, India and Malaysia.

The sale of counterfeit products endangers public wellbeing and the economy due to unpaid taxes. People who would like to report counterfeit products being sold can call 081 999 808 or write to [email protected].