Thailand destroys US$100 million in counterfeit intellectual property


BANGKOK, Aug 29 – The Thai authorities on Monday destroyed over 120 tonnes — 1.3 million pieces — of counterfeit goods violating intellectual property rights following Thai court rulings concerning intellectual property rights violations.

Deputy Commerce Minister Siriwat Kajornprasart presided over the event, which was a collaboration between the Commerce Ministry, the Customs Department, the Department of Special Investigation, the Intellectual Property Department and the Royal Thai Police.

Diplomats from embassies to Thailand, including the United States and the European Union, were also invited to the event.

The destruction is the second time this year of destroying all counterfeit items with a value of Bt3.1 billion (over $100 million).

This year’s first destruction was held in the Andaman resort of Phuket where 93,000 counterfeit items worth Bt58 million (over $1.93 million) were destroyed.

Although many countries see that there are many cases related to the intellectual property rights violation in Thailand, Mr Siriwat explained that the Thai government and private sector continued to tighten measures in suppression and to educate youths and the public in general not to use goods violating intellectual property rights.

The deputy commerce minister added that remains of the destroyed items will be recycled for economical use.

Meanwhile, the Intellectual Property Department will apply the stricter measures to deal with the matter and to prevent the violations.

Mr Siriwat said he believed enforcement of the Intellectual Property law in conjunction with more strict suppression measures, the United States will revise Thailand’s status from its current US government Priority Watch List (PWL) status to its Watch List (WL).

Thailand has been listed in the Priority Watch List for at least two years.

The deputy commerce minister urged integrated cooperation from government agencies, the private sector and the public to convince the US to remove Thailand from the PWL.