RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC — The “Stop Counterfeiting in Manufactured Goods Act,” S. 1699, which passed the Senate on Nov. 10, is an important piece of legislation that will strengthen federal laws against product counterfeiting, according to the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA).
This is the companion bill to H.R. 32, also called the “Stop Counterfeiting in Manufactured Goods Act,” which was passed in a unanimous vote by the House of Representatives on May 23.
“MEMA spearheaded this effort from the beginning, supporting both the Senate and House versions from introduction through passage,” said Paul Foley, president of MEMA’s Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association and executive director of its Brand Protection Council.
“We are very grateful to Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT), for their leadership on this issue,” said Foley. “Passage of this bill by the Senate is vital to protecting the intellectual property of automotive suppliers and all American manufacturers. Our leaders in Washington understand that counterfeiting is a crime that is stealing good American manufacturing jobs. Also, product counterfeiting undermines U.S. and foreign safety standards, putting consumers at risk. We cannot let this go on, at home or abroad.”
The FBI estimates that product counterfeiting costs U.S. businesses $200 billion to $250 billion annually. Product counterfeiting is estimated to cost American automotive suppliers approximately $12 billion in lost sales annually.
The two bills now go to conference committee for resolution, and then will be passed to the president for his signature.
In 2004, MEMA organized its Brand Protection Council to share best industry practices to detect and prevent product counterfeiting, educate law enforcement and media to the problem and lobby for stronger laws and intellectual property rights protection at home and abroad. To learn more, go to aftermarketsuppliers.org.