The Customs Administration states that Taiwan, as well as most countries around the world, pays great attention to intellectual property rights protection to ensure that valuable assets of humans’ mental creativity are prevented from being infringed by counterfeit or piracy activities. Guarding the first line of defense, Taiwan Customs has always made great efforts to interdict counterfeit goods from crossing its border. According to statistics, Taiwan Customs seized over 30,000 pieces of trademark-infringed goods in the first half of 2023 across all ports of entry. The total estimated market value was over NT$ 500 million. The figures indicate a remarkable achievement in cracking down on infringement.
The Customs Administration indicates that lately, a huge amount of intercepted counterfeit goods has been purchased on cross-border e-commerce platforms and sent to individual consumers by express delivery. The trademarks which have been infringed by these counterfeit products include famous luxury brands which consumers are familiar with, such as Burberry, Channel, Rolex, and Apple, along with a great amount of other fake beauty products, pharmaceuticals, and food products in the first half of this year. These products could have damaged public health and posed negative effects on economic development if they had entered the domestic market.
With the emergence of cross-border e-commerce, consumers have been used to shopping online as they believe they can find a bargain on big-name products. However, sometimes the bargain turns out to be a letdown or even counterfeit. If the counterfeits are inspected and intercepted by Customs at the border and proved by rights holders as counterfeit, the case will be transferred for criminal investigation in accordance with Article 97 of the Trademark Act. The importer could face criminal charges whether it has the intention or not to breach laws or regulations. Apart from possible criminal conviction, a fine and confiscation will also be imposed according to the Customs Anti-Smuggling Act if the goods are proved to infringe trademarks. Therefore, the Customs Administration urges the public to be cautious whenever shopping online.
The Customs Administration stresses again that counterfeit goods will impact consumers and businesses negatively. It also emphasizes that awareness about protecting intellectual property rights requires a joint effort between the public and private sectors. Apart from active border enforcement on deterring counterfeit goods, Customs calls on consumers to refuse counterfeit products when engaging in cross-border online purchases. By doing so, there will be a chance to create a fair business environment and enhance industrial competitiveness.
Press Release Contact: Jenny Shih, Section Chief
Contact number: (02) 25505500 extension 2941