x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Tip-off leads Dubai inspectors to Dh3m worth of fake car parts

Counterfeit car parts worth an estimated Dh3 million have been seized by consumer protection inspectors during a raid on a warehouse.

DUBAI // Counterfeit car parts worth an estimated Dh3 million have been seized by consumer protection inspectors after a raid on a warehouse.

The raid by the Commercial Compliance and Consumer Protection (CCCP) section of the Department of Economic Development (Ded) on a warehouse in Dubai Investments Park followed a tip-off.

It came just days after Oman’s consumer protection agency reported that the majority of counterfeit goods seized in the first half of this year are believed to have come from the UAE.

The operation was part of an ongoing offensive to protect trademarks and intellectual property.

“The recent seizure of counterfeit car parts is our largest so far and came after intense follow-up of consumer complaints, field visits, and random inspection by our team,” said Abdulla Al Shehi, the director of compliance and consumer protection at the CCCP.

“We identify the right means to detect counterfeit products by working with brand owners or their representatives in Dubai.”

Inspectors also found 16,000 posters with forged logos and a special device used to print the logos. The seized parts included 27,700 air and oil filters, 4,000 bolts and 3,000 fan belts, plus brake systems, valves and bonnets.

Mr Al Shehi said the fake parts have been destroyed and the owners of the goods fined. Ahmad Al Awadi, section head of the CCCP, said his department was determined to crack down on the commercial fraud of materials, goods and services and protect trademarks.

“The CCCP’s efforts in this regard are part of Ded’s focus on enhancing service quality and customer satisfaction through eliminating negative practices,” he said. “Ded also adopts transparent measures in acting against commercial fraud and implementing the relevant laws and regulations.”

According to officials in Oman, counterfeiting is a growing problem there with a 12 per cent increase in the number of fake goods entering the country compared with the first six months of 2011. A third of these came through the UAE.

About 40,000 counterfeit parts were seized in the first half of 2012 – 75 per cent of which came from the Emirates.

According to official data, high on the list are fake car parts, electronic games and medicines.

“Fake car parts can kill but, despite the ads warning of this, business is still thriving,” said Said Al Saifi, an authorised agent of Toyota parts based in Muscat.

The fake parts arrive in Oman mostly at border crossings and by sea, according to the state-run Consumer Protection Agency.

The sultanate shares three borders with the UAE.

nhanif@thenational.ae