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Counterfeits are commercial espionage – Trade PS

Dr. Chris Kiptoo has said counterfeiting is not only a Kenyan problem but a global phenomenon with devastating impact on fair trade.

NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 3 – Trade Principal Secretary Dr. Chris Kiptoo says counterfeits are a commercial espionage which undermines competitive advantage and erodes brand value reputation robbing owners of intellectual property rights.

Speaking at the inter-agency Anti-illicit stakeholders’ forum in Nairobi, Kiptoo has said counterfeiting is not only a Kenyan problem but a global phenomenon with devastating impact on fair trade.

He has reiterated the Government’s commitment to fighting counterfeits, contraband, and undervalued goods.

One of the measures taken is the proposed establishment of a Trade Remedy Agency under the Kenya Trade Remedies Bill which would investigate and impose anti-dumping and anti-counterfeit penalties.

“The Trade Remedies Act 2017 provides the legal and institutional framework for the application of trade remedies in Kenya in compliance with the WTO law which requires a domestic law and institution to receive complaints and, undertake investigations in line with the WTO Agreements,” Kiptoo told the media in January.

Overall, Kiptoo added that trade remedies can contribute to the achievement of Africa’s industrialization goals and need to be positively considered and implemented creatively to ensure the continent addresses its supply-side constraints and produces the goods that it requires for countries to trade with each other.

“Since manufacturing in Kenya has been identified as one of the primary areas of focus by the government, it will be worthwhile to consider that having a legal and institutional framework for the application of trade remedies in Kenya will significantly contribute to this national objective.”

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