CHINA / Regional

Owners of prestigious brand fight piracy
(Shanghai Daily)
Updated: 2006-05-01 10:01

Nineteen owners of famous international brands have banded together to fight piracy in wholesale and retail markets in four major Chinese cities by forcing market managers to regulate stall owners.

The companies, including Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Calvin Klein, Chanel, Puma and Gucci, have hired law firm Baker & Mckenzie to manage the campaign in Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen.

Staff members from the law firm will visit wholesale and retail markets in the four cities acting as ordinary customers.

If they find any fake products, they will inform market authorities and demand action is taken. If counterfeit products are found a second time, the law firm will complain to the local industrial and commercial administrative bureau and take further legal action.

"The move will involve market authorities in brand protection. Since there are so many counterfeit sellers, we want to enhance brand infringement control and prevention through monitoring and communicating with market owners," the law firm said in a statement. "Market authorities should play a key role in brand protection. If violations are detected, market authorities can break the rental contact and push the violator out of the market."

The law firm noted that a Beijing court recently ruled the Xiushui Market should take some responsibility for counterfeit sales as it failed to regulate vendors despite promising no fake products would be sold in the market.

Officials with the Shanghai Industrial and Commercial Administrative Bureau support the campaign.

"We accept any reports on brand violation, either from companies or citizens," said Zhou Shuguang of the bureau's information department.