New Delhi (India), August 7: On July 27, 023, JETRO, together with Japanese companies (Canon Singapore, Canon India, Bandai Namco India, and Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India) and Amity University Uttar Pradesh, organized an insightful ‘Counterfeit Awareness Workshop’. JETRO is a government organization that works to promote mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world.
The objective of this Workshop was to equip students with the essential know-how and create awareness about counterfeit products and piracy. In the past, anti-counterfeiting and anti-piracy awareness-raising activities have been targeted at government officials such as customs officers and police officers, but this was the first time a workshop was held targeting general consumers, especially young students who will become a major consumer segment in the future.
Emphasizing upon the need to create awareness about counterfeit products, Mr. Hiroki Watanabe, Director IPR, JETRO, averred, “Trade Relations between India and Japan have become stronger and mutually more beneficial. If a consumer buys counterfeit products, not only he is impacted but the economy of the country is also negatively impacted since companies have to bear huge losses and suffer financially. We have the power to drive the change by being aware of fake products, thereby ensuring a safe and secure world for everyone.”
Highlighting the differentiating factors between fake and genuine products, Mr. Yosuke Sugata, Manager, Canon Singapore, stated, “Many counterfeits started their business on e-commerce market during Covid-19 pandemic and tracking counterfeiters on e-commerce is more difficult than physical shop. Therefore, one must watch out for the red flags including unusually low price, high discount rate, negative feedback from previous buyer and suspicious looking images.”
Mr. Shun Fujitsu, Coordinator Honda, asserted, “The color and font of the brand logo must be observed very carefully. When consumer buys fake products, the quality is compromised and he is cheated by the companies, even though he might be getting the product at a cheaper price.”
Mr. Pankaj Jha, Manager, Sales Department, Bandai Namco India Pvt. Ltd, said, “Bandai Namco participated in Mumbai Comic Con event and did market research for Japanese ANIME and character merchandise in India. We found that the stores were selling Japanese ANIME character counterfeit products of Bandai Namco. We identified our products by looking at the copy right label, perfect detailing, correct coloring, perfection in moulds and the overall feel of the material.”
Welcoming the guests on this occasion, Prof. Sunita Rattan, Head of Institution, Amity Institute of Applied Sciences, stated, “In northern India itself, more than 405 products are counterfeit products. “
During the workshop, the benefits of original products, the health and safety risks that counterfeit and pirated products pose to consumers, and how to distinguish between genuine and fake products was explained. The workshop also included an interactive session in which students were asked whether they would rather buy genuine or counterfeit products and were given a quiz to help them distinguish between genuine and counterfeit products, to which they responded positively about their opinions and views on counterfeit products.
While the police and customs authorities are taking measures against counterfeit and pirated products, understanding of intellectual property protection among general consumers is also essential to curb the spread of damage from counterfeit and pirated products.
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