Audio Transcription of Interview on Classic FM on 7 August 2006; The Difference Between Pirated Goods and Counterfeit Goods

TONY BLEWITT:

Once again here on ClassicFM we are talking about intellectual property with Spoor & Fisher. My guest in the studio is Mohamed Khader from Spoor & Fisher and the topic today is anti-counterfeiting. Good morning, Mohamed...

MOHAMED KHADER:

Good morning Tony. Interesting topic …

TONY BLEWITT:

I have always wondered, what is the difference between pirated goods and counterfeit goods, and for that matter, grey goods - and can you give us some examples?

MOHAMED KHADER:

Historically, pirated and counterfeit goods were dealt with as separate issues. Under current legislation these issues are dealt with simultaneously. To give some sort of background as to the difference between the two: counterfeiting historically dealt with the infringement of trade marks. For example, the manufacturing of an unauthorized replica of a FIFA soccer ball or an unauthorized reproduction of a LEVI’S tee-shirt would be a counterfeit product historically and now. Previously, this would have been dealt with in terms of the Merchandise Marks Act. Piracy deals with copyright infringement and your usual DVD’s and CD’s and other music recordings that are reproduced from those works - these would ordinarily be considered to be pirated products. Grey goods, on the other hand, are usually neither pirated nor counterfeit goods, but rather genuine products that come into South Africa from different distribution channels. The goods don’t follow the normal distribution channel where a wholesaler/retailer/vendor, for example, imports a TDK audio cassette which is manufactured under authority in Japan – these are original goods, but they come into South Africa via a third party, and not the authorized distributor of TDK in South Africa.

TONY BLEWITT:

What legislation is in place to combat counterfeiting, piracy and the sale of grey goods?

MOHAMED KHADER:

South Africa is in a fortunate position in the sense that it has an effective piece of legislation called the Counterfeit Goods Act, which is recurring in nature, giving the proprietor of a trade mark and/or the owner of copyright, effective enforcement relief.

TONY BLEWITT:

The problem is quite a big one, a recent global counterfeiting piracy report shows that South Africa rated 16 th amongst the top 20 reporting violations, with losses equating to ±R21 million. It is a huge business.

MOHAMED KHADER:

It is a huge problem and in recent judgments overseas it has been mentioned that the trade in counterfeit goods equates to something like between 5 to 7% of world trade. That is the magnitude of the problem.

TONY BLEWITT:

5 to 7%? As an average person driving around I see goods for sale on the side of the road. Should people do something about that or should they just ignore it and look the other way?

MOHAMED KHADER:

As a consumer, one needs to be aware of this problem. The trade in counterfeit goods not only causes a problem for the brand owner’s revenue and his equity, but it also harms the country’s global image. Bearing in mind that we are hosting the 2010 World Cup, I would not want to see either counterfeiting - or ambush marketing, for that matter - taking the limelight. It is a huge problem and as a consumer, one should avoid purchasing counterfeit products. Not only does it cause the problems that I have highlighted now, there are also health risks involved. For some or other reason, counterfeit perfumes have hit the market in quite a big way – and these products can be extremely dangerous to your health...

Mohamed Khader

SPOOR & FISHER

Date published: 1990/01/01
Author: Mohamed Khader

Tags: audio transcription classic fm pirated goods counterfeit goods