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Fake brand imports blocked by Japan down 8.7% in 2015

Fake brand imports blocked by Japan down 8.7% in 2015

TOKYO: Japan’s customs authorities blocked the import of fake brand products and other items violating intellectual property rights in 29,274 cases in 2015, down 8.7 percent from the previous year, the Finance Ministry said Friday.

Despite the first decline in six years, the number was the second largest on record after the figure rose to 32,060 in 2014, partly reflecting the growing popularity of Internet shopping, a ministry official said.

In total, 91.1 percent of the imitation goods came from China by mail and cargo. Bags accounted for 35.2 percent of the total, followed by clothes at 14.2 percent and shoes at 11.9 percent.

Meanwhile, the number of imports of fake pharmaceuticals and automobile parts that may pose a danger to human health and safety more than doubled in 2015 from the previous year, according to the ministry. Authentic items of the same sort and volume as the fake goods seized would have been worth some 14.7 billion yen ($129 million).