Alibaba ramps up efforts to avoid US counterfeit blacklist

By Michelle Yeomans

- Last updated on GMT

Alibaba ramps up efforts to avoid US counterfeit blacklist

Related tags Counterfeit goods

Major Chinese e-commerce player, Alibaba has written to the US government urging it to not include Taobao and its other trading platforms on a list of 'Notorious Markets' after it was suspected of selling counterfeit goods on its website.

The U.S. Trade Representative’s office publishes a list of marketplaces that sell counterfeit goods every year which can effect consumer confidence and even impact share prices for businesses.

The USTR invites written comments from the public and interested parties prior to the annual posting which will take place this year between December and March 2016.

Thus, in recent letters ​to the government, Alibaba made sure to outline the recent steps its taken to protect intellectual property, which includes tighter protocols around verifying the identity of sellers on Taobao as well as an English-language version of the platform where brand owners can register their intellectual-property rights and submit complaints and requests for items to be taken down. 

"We are confident that Alibaba Group's practices today conform to all US intellectual property laws. If anything, we have adopted a number of sophisticated, proactive measures that go well beyond the law's requirements and will continue to do so,​" wrote Eric Pelletier, Head of International Government Affairs at Alibaba.

'Success cannot be built on dishonesty'

USTR's blacklist is a sore spot for the company as and Taobao appeared on it back in 2008.

As expected, the business didn't take well to the inclusion and invested heavily in cleaning up the sites that by 2012 both were removed from the list.

However, the latest formal letters follow accusations that the Chinese e-tailer "allowed the sale of counterfeit goods" and "could be committing fraud by faking their numbers” — claims that Alibaba rebutted last month in a conversation with Fortune.

In an interview earlier in the month with Chinese news agency Xinhua, Alibaba's found and chief executive Jack Ma said the company's customer complaint rate was a low 0.0116 per cent, lower than that of bricks-and-mortar shops.

"I don't believe success can built on dishones​ty," the CEO told the publication.

Related topics Business & Financial

Related news