AAFA lauds USTR counterfeiting report
The U.S. Trade Representative this week published a report of the Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets for piracy and counterfeiting.
The report focuses on the most serious markets and serves as a precursor to the release of the full Special 301 Report slated for the end of April.
The American Apparel & Footwear Association said Tuesday it welcomed the publication.
“Each year, footwear, apparel and fashion accessories account for the most seizures by U.S. Customs and Border Protection in terms of counterfeiting and piracy,” said AAFA President and Chief Executive Kevin Burke. “The U.S. apparel and footwear industry relies on our brand integrity as we compete in the global market. As consumers continue to utilize e-commerce sites to purchase our quality products, we must recognize and fight the threat that modern technologies pose to brand reputations. This report does just that.”
The Special 301 Out-of-Cycle Review of Notorious Markets notes the growing prevalence of rogue Web sites as a significant threat to the U.S. apparel and footwear industry and its supply chain, AAFA said.
'The Web sites often look legitimate in the form of high-tech Web sites that accept major credit cards,' AAFA said. 'This practice enables counterfeiters to sell directly to consumers, who are likely unaware that the product is fake. In addition to representing the theft of companies’ brand names, these counterfeit goods may not comply with the appropriate safety standards, leaving the stark possibility that these counterfeit goods may pose real and significant harm to consumers and their families.