Value of confiscated fake goods falls 37.9% in 2012
MANILA, Philippines - Confiscated fake goods by various agencies fell 37.9% to P5.21 billion in 2012 from P8.38 billion in 2011, largely due to the lower value of the seized pieces.
In a press conference on Friday, February 1, Ricardo Blancaflor, director-general of the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL), explained that, while the number of fake pieces seized in 2012 were more than in 2011, the peso value of the confiscated items in 2012 were less.
He cited as example the high-value Swiss watches that were prevalent in 2011, but not in 2012.
In May 2012 alone, authorities confiscated some 2,016 Louis Vuitton items worth P79.77 million, making May the month when the NBI and PNP seized the biggest amount of faked goods. Total for the month was P80.09 million.
In a previous interview with Rappler, Blancaflor stressed that awareness about piracy was not the issue.
"We tried to find out the consciousness level of Pinoys on piracy. It turns out that 54% of Filipinos are aware of piracy -- very high level of awareness," he explained.
"They said, 'We know its fake, we know its cheap but we can't afford to pay for the real thing'," Blancaflor shared, citing the most common reason given in that survey.
On Friday, Blancaflor also attributed the lower number to the change in command in relevant which agencies also has affected enforcement activities.
The IPOPHL is awaiting the signing by of President Aquino into law a bill giving police powers to the agency that would facilitate
apprehension and seizure of fake foods.
The bill would allow IPOPHL to issue mission orders -- unlike at present where it has to get search warrants from agencies -- and
order enforcement agencies to conduct the operations. - Rappler.com