Authorities display seized counterfeit products.
Jamil Khan, Senior Reporter
The authorities in the UAE have seized a large quantity of substandard face masks and antiseptic sanitisers products during raids on dozens of illegal compounds during the lockdown and not only saved the public from the risk of using these products but also apprehended the culprits.
This was stated by Hatem Abdel Ghani, Partner, Director, The Legal Group (TLG), on the sidelines of the day-long annual workshop “Intellectual Property and Brand Protection Training”. The workshop was held at a local hotel in Dubai and attended by the representatives of Dubai Police, Dubai Economy Department and Dubai Customs along with the experts of various international brands.
“The purpose of organising the annual workshop is to distinguish between genuine and counterfeit products and the risks of counterfeit products through the multimedia presentation by the concerned experts,” he said.
He further pointed that since the COVID-19 broke out in early March this year, the cases of two major sectors related to public health and technology increased manifold. “We noticed that many factories in countries are illegally producing counterfeit products like face masks and antiseptic sanitisers to fill the gap in local demand.
“The authorities have raided more than 20 factories and setups in parking lots, warehouses, farmhouses and even in residential apartments producing counterfeit products of international brands,” he said.
The authorities have also noticed that the demand for technology products also increased during the lockdown.
“During the lockdown everyone was working from home and we noticed that the demand for computers, laptops, tablets and accessories increased. We were also aware that the sale of computers and other technology products including headphones, webcams, different kinds of cables, etc, increased in online shopping portals. Many counterfeit products were dumped in the local market but our teams not only seized such products but also raided the plants where these were being produced,” Abdel Ghani said.
He added that during this workshop, the organisers exhibited several original and counterfeit products of international brands for the benefit of the enforcement authorities to motivate them in cases against fraud and counterfeiting and to spread awareness among the public in the UAE.
“Our aim of these workshops is to stimulate the skills of the responsible authorities in the issues of combating fraud and counterfeiting and develop their expertise by being briefed on the latest technologies used by counterfeiters.
“It also contributed to spread awareness among consumers about the illegal activities of counterfeiters, in order to reduce commercial fraud and eliminate counterfeit products from the market,” he said.
The Intellectual Property Department annually organises a series of training workshops in Dubai, Sharjah and Ajman with the participation of the representatives from the Police Department, Criminal Investigation Laboratory, Dept Of Economic Development, Customs, and other authorities in different emirates of Dubai, Sharjah, and Ajman.
The measure aims to enhance precautionary measures as part of efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 and protect public health.
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