Authorities destroy 8000 counterfeit bilum


EIGHT thousand counterfeit bilums from China which were conficated by Customs Service PNG in July were destroyed in Kimbe, West New Britain yesterday.
The destruction exercise was in collaboration with the Investment Promotion Authority, the lead agency with the enabling legislation under the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) laws and the IPA Act 1992.
Customs’ assistant commissioner for compliance and procedures Mark Rami said: “The entity involved is also from the original destination of where the goods come from.
“The entity has breached the IPR laws under Copyright Act for unlawful copying of PNG local artworks and designs, and the Investment Promotion Authority Act 1992 for engaging in activities reserved for nationals under the cottage business activity list.”
Rami said the destruction exercise was in support of calls by Commerce and Industry Minister Wera Mori condemning the influx and widespread selling of counterfeit factory manufactured bilums in Asian shops.
“This exercise should serve as a warning to those engaging in these types of unscrupulous and illegal activities that the long arm of the law will still get you,” he said.
“PNGCS is now collaborating with relevant stakeholders and law-enforcement agencies to dish out harsher penalties to those that are involved.
“We are aware of detection at borders before it surfaced four months ago, and have been at forefront of stakeholder consultations on this issue, bringing together relevant stakeholders such as Investment Promotion Authority, Independent Consumer and Competition Commission, Small to Medium Enterprise Corporation, Department of Commerce and Industry and National Cultural Commission.
“Our mandate is to facilitate legitimate trade, protect local industries and communities.
“As such we have a responsibility to genuine investors and our people. “Powers limited to activities at entry points and control areas only.”
Rami said with that mandate, they tried to assist the right holders, the owners of the brands and trademarks and all the other intellectual property rights.
Rami said the destruction exercise on counterfeit bilums in Kimbe was the first but not the last.
President of Bilum Export Promotion Authority Florence Kamel applauded Customs for carrying out the destruction exercise.
“It is for the benefit of the people of Papua New Guinea, especially the women who are engaged in these reserved activities,” she said.
Stakeholders represented during the destruction exercise were West New Britain government, IPA, Department of Health, National Agriculture Quarantine and Inspection Authority, police, media, and Customs Kimbe and Port Moresby.

Leave a Reply