Amazon websites may join USTR's 'Notorious Markets' list: WSJ

Over the years, the list has included China's largest e-commerce platform, Taobao.com, which is owned by Alibaba.

    Amazon invested more than $400m in personnel and employed more than 5,000 people in 2018 to fight fraud and counterfeiting in its stores [File: Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters]
    Amazon invested more than $400m in personnel and employed more than 5,000 people in 2018 to fight fraud and counterfeiting in its stores [File: Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters]

    The administration of United States President Donald Trump is considering putting some of Amazon.com Inc's overseas websites on a list of global marketplaces known for counterfeit goods, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter.

    The action would be taken by the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) through its annual "Notorious Markets" list, the report said, adding that no decisions have been made and that similar proposals last year were eventually discarded.

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    Amazon said it "strictly prohibits" counterfeit products on its platforms and invests heavily to protect customers from such items.

    "Combatting counterfeit requires collaboration across the industry - from retailers, brands, law enforcement, and government, and we continue to be actively engaged with these stakeholders as we hold bad actors accountable and drive counterfeit to zero in our store," the company said in a statement.

    The USTR did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Over the years, the "Notorious Markets" list has included China's largest e-commerce platform, Taobao.com. The company is owned and operated by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.

    In October, for the second year in a row, the American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA) urged the USTR to include foreign domains owned and operated by Amazon on the list.

    The trade body represents more than 1,000 brands across the fashion industry, and counts some of the largest retailers and brands - such as Macy's Inc and Adidas AG - among its members.

    "Despite its role as a leader in the worldwide retail landscape, and as an important selling partner for many of our member brands, Amazon continues to present significant counterfeit challenges," AAFA said in its submission to the USTR in October.

    In response to AAFA, Amazon said it invested more than $400m in personnel and employed more than 5,000 people in 2018 to fight fraud and counterfeiting in its stores.

    The White House declined to comment.

    SOURCE: Reuters news agency