Home Appliance : Counterfeit Products Flood Markets

Blenders, washing machines, TV and radio sets, headphones, of bad quality continue to flourish in local markets.

The influx of counterfeit products in the markets is a cause for concern. These categories of products are fake or unauthorized replicas of the real product. They are often produced with the intent to take advantage of the superior value of the imitated product. Counterfeit products are low-quality imitations of original items.  Blenders that are suppose to serve for years automatically start sending out smoke after one month. Headphones with awful sound quality, or worse products that do not meet health and safety standards. Sometimes, the quality of counterfeit items can sometimes come close to the authentic products they aim to mimic. Counterfeit products are common amongst household products. House managers have different stories to this effect. 
A sojourn in some shops in Douala reveals that most of the shop owners are aware of the business and sometimes advised their customers on the right product to take. A shop owner who requested anonymity told CT that some of the fake products are mostly electrical products like blenders, Iron, water heaters, Television, fridges. “I usually show my customers the original and the fake if they choose the fake because it is cheaper I sell” he said. This trader said some of the fake products are produced in Cameroon while some come from abroad. 
Mrs Mbarga Veronique has been a victim to counterfeit products. She told CT that she bought an electric iron and when she returned home on plugging it in, the iron exploded. “I don’t know what the seller did, because he plug it in while in the shop and when I returned home the iron exploded. I returned to the shop and they told me there was nothing they could do” Mrs Mbarga narrated.
Moreover, dealers in such illicit business make brisk gains as no tax or custom duty is paid for such products smuggled into the market. It is thus difficult for them to abandon this “lucrative business” even though to the detriment of the State treasury as well as health risk for consumers. Sometimes the goods are smuggled into the country with the complicity of control officers. Several public administrations notably the custom department, the Ministry of Trade, the Navy of the Cameroon military are combating the unhealthy economic practice with varied results. 



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