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Beijing fakes market gets own brand
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The Silk Street Market in Beijing, which has long offered copies of international designer and branded goods, has unveiled its own brand-SILKSTREET-and warned that anyone who tries to counterfeit that brand will be held liable.

The first items to bear the SILKSTREET name, displayed on Wednesday, include apparel such as neckties, shirts and scarves, as well as a few household items such as tablecloths. They are marked "quality guaranteed" with a label that tells buyers that "the goods are certified by the Silk Street Market. If any quality problems are found, the market will bear the responsibility of compensation."

"SILKSTREET products are sold exclusively in the market. Anyone using the brand outside will be held liable," the Beijing Evening News quoted Wang Zili, general manager of the market, as saying.

Nearly 100 stalls connected with 39 market shops will be entitled to sell the goods initially. T-shirts, jeans, knitted goods, jewelry, luggage and other items will be added to the product line, Wang said.

Those now authorized to sell SILKSTREET products had to have a good business record, said Wang, with "no record of selling fake or shoddy products within six months and no [customer] complaints."

Most of the SILKMARKET items come from the factories of famous Chinese manufacturers. For instance, shirts come from the century-old silk company Ruifuxiang, according to the newspaper.

Market administrators believed that establishing the brand would be an important step to protect intellectual property rights, the report said.

The Silk Street (Xiushui) market in eastern Beijing's Chaoyang District has become popular with overseas tourists, who have flocked there to buy counterfeit and knock-off luxury clothes and accessories since 1985.

In March 2005, the outdoor market moved to a multi-story building next to Xiushui Street for better management.

(Xinhua News Agency January 31, 2008)

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