The Anti-Counterfeit Authority has released goods worth Ksh50 million seized at one-stop shop China Square after a complaint filed by Smithmo Company Ltd.
In a statement sent to newsrooms on Thursday, March 2, 2023, ACA CEO Robi Mbugua noted that the move comes after the complainant requested to withdraw the complaint against the shopping hub located inside UniCity mall in Kenyatta University.
"We would like to clarify that the Anti-Counterfeit Authority (ACA) has released the goods that were seized at the China Square worth 50 million shillings. The goods were seized on 16th February 2023 following a compaint received from Smithmo Company Ltd, which suspected the sale of counterfeit Finder tools within the premises," the statement reads in parts
ACA also noted that they had verified that the goods in question were sourced from the same manufacturer and subsequently confirmed that they were authentic.
"We would like to inform the public that the complainant, in a letter dated 27th February, wrote to ACA and requested to withdraw the complaint against China Square. This request was made upon confirmation that the goods seized were sourced from the same manufacturer and International brand owner Finder Merchandise," the statement added.
ACA implored members of the public to tread with caution as they purchase goods and subsequently encouraged them to report any suspected cases of counterfeit products.
"We would like to urge members of the public to be vigilant when purchasing goods to avoid falling victim to counterfeit products. We also encourage them to report any suspected cases of counterfeit products to ACA to help protect their rights and interests," the statement added.
The Thika-road-based shopping hub has been at the centre of controversy after claims that it was driving Kenyan traders out of business with low-priced goods.
This saw the shop closing its operations to create time to re-evaluate and re-plan its business strategy.
"We regret to inform you that China Square Limited will be temporarily closed on Sunday, 26th February 2023. This decision has been made to allow us to re-evaluate and replan our company strategy," a statement from the retailer's management read in parts.
Trade, Investment and Industry Cabinet Secretary (CS) Moses Kuria called on China Square to cease its operations in Kenya.
On its part, the Chinese Embassy in Nairobi called on the Kenyan government to protect the businesses and rights of Chinese citizens living and working there.
"The Embassy has taken note of the recent situation on the issue of "China Square", and would like to reiterate that the Embassy supports deepening trade and investment cooperation between China and Kenya, and supports Chinese enterprises and Chinese citizens in conducting business in accordance with Kenyan laws and regulations," the statement read in parts.
"At the same time, we hope that the Kenyan government will protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese enterprises and Chinese citizens, and create an inclusive and friendly business environment, so as to better promote China-Kenya practical cooperation and bring benefit to our two countries and two peoples," the statement added.