Management authorities must take stronger measures in fighting counterfeit goods in order to better prevent and reduce trade fraud, according to the Vietnam Association for Protection of Consumer Rights.
Nguyen Manh Hung, the association’s chairman, said to better fight the production and trade of counterfeit goods, it was necessary to enhance the role and responsibilities of administration in provinces instead of just direct relevant management agencies such as the economic police and market management agencies.
At the beginning of June, Hoa Phat Group said authorities in the southern province of Binh Duong inspected and discovered nearly 6 tonnes of construction steel worth about VND150 million (US$6,540) which counterfeited the group’s trademark. The goods were kept at the warehouse of the Tuong Lai Viet Trading and Services Company in Dong Hoa ward, Di An city, Binh Duong Province, Vietnam News Agency reported.
In addition, authorities in Binh Duong also found more than 12 tonnes of construction steel of other brands without invoices or documents proving the origin of the goods in the company’s warehouse.
This is among many cases of producing and trading counterfeit goods which were discovered and handled by local market management authorities.
A representative of Hoa Phat Group said counterfeit and imitation goods negatively affect the image and brand of businesses, and the interests of consumers. In the context of high steel prices, the group is coordinating with the management authorities to strictly handle the crime to protect itself and the interests of consumers.
According to lawyer Nguyen Thien Hiep, a member of the Hanoi Bar Association, the production and sale of counterfeit goods in Viet Nam is very complicated, including the counterfeiting and imitation of famous brands in many industries such as iron and steel, cosmetics and shoes to gain illicit profits.
Under Article 192 of the 2015 Penal Code, which was amended and supplemented in 2017, the maximum penalty for the crime of producing and trading in counterfeit goods is 15 years in prison.
People who produce or trade in counterfeit goods valued between VND30 million and VND150 million, can be fined from VND100 million to VND1 billion, or suffer a prison sentence of one to five years, according to the law. — VNS