If your IP is being violated, it is most likely taking place in these 9 hotbeds of illegal activity.

In China when we talk about “the Notorious BIG” we may not be referring to a dearly departed large rapper and friend of Puff Daddy. Nope, when it comes to China sourcing we are referring to the notoriously large and notoriously easy to access online and offline markets that have a reputation for selling counterfeits, knockoffs and unlicensed merchandise ( product made at an official factory, but sold out the back door).

Each year the US Government publishes a list. Each year the Chinese government says

the term “notorious” lacks evidence and is “irresponsible and biased”

and are

…merely based on very vague sources like ‘rights holders’ or ‘reportedly’ when accusing Chinese marketplaces…

said the ministry’s spokesman in the recent China Daily article.

I’m not going to get in the middle of the two governments in regards to the accuracy of the list, but if you are worried that your products are being sold without your consent in China, here is the list published by the USTR and refuted by Beijing for your general reference:




Garment Wholesale Center

Buynow PC Malls

Luohu Commercial Center in Shenzhen (right on the border as you cross from HK to SZ. Stop in and spend 5 minutes walking the floor. If you aren’t accosted multiple times per minute to buy fake goods, you have not yet found at the Luohu Commercial Center!)

Silk Market in Beijing

Zengcheng International Jeans Market

I would like to add two more locations to the list, based on my personal experience:

Wholesale market for export grade products in every major Chinese city.


Without question, the primary website for moving unlicensed merchandise in terms of sheer volume is TaoBao.com.  The vast majority of items for sale are legit, but it remains the main channel used by factories or factory staff to sell products out the backdoor.  Check that website and the ones mentioned above periodically to see if your product is for sale and who is selling it!

Also visit www.SupplierBlackList to find a list of factories who abuse the trust of international buyers.


Related Content

How to register, protect and monitor intellectual property (Part 1 of 3)

How to register, protect and monitor intellectual property (Part 2 of 3)

How to register, protect and monitor intellectual property (Part 3 of 3)

Video 5: Protecting Your Intellectual Property

Video 8: Avoiding Scams

Genuine products from China?


Wishing you successful China sourcing!

About the author: Mike Bellamy

Advisory Board Member & Featured Blogger at the not-for-profit China Sourcing Information Center (www.ChinaSourcingInfo.org). Author of “The Essential Reference Guide to China Sourcing” and founder of PassageMaker Sourcing Solutions.


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