The United States trade agency has added sites operated by Chinese companies Alibaba and Tencent on its Notorious Markets List.
Notorious Market List is a tally of businesses the US trade agency believes are trading counterfeit products. The agency has added 42 websites and 35 physical stores that are operated by the said companies.
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As per the agency, the said companies “engage in or facilitate substantial trademark counterfeiting or copyright privacy.”
There’s no denying that this could be part of the current conflict between the US and China over trade and technology.
Katherine Tai from the US Trade says that “The global trade in counterfeit and pirated goods undermines critical US innovation and creativity and harms American workers,”
Added to the list are AliExpress and WeChat e-commerce websites, which are owned by Alibaba and Tencent, respectively. The Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) says that the sites are “two significant China-based online markets that reportedly facilitate substantial trademark counterfeiting”.
In a statement, Tencent claims that they have “invested significant resources” to protect intellectual property rights to its sites and platforms.
A Tencent representative told the BBC: “We strongly disagree with the decision made by the United States Trade Representative and are committed to working collaboratively to resolve this matter,”
Alibaba is yet to release a statement.
Via: BBC News