Abu Dhabi Customs has recycled 578 counterfeit goods of international trademarks valued at AED2 million, seized by customs centres during 2022 and the first quarter of 2023.

The counterfeit goods, which were recycled to convert into materials usable in other fields, included leather accessories such as bags and clothes, watches and belts, cotton and sports clothes, in addition to a number of smart devices such as wired and wireless headphones.

Counterfeit goods which could not be recycled were destroyed after completion of environmental and legal requirements at Abu Dhabi Airport Customs Center’s Logistics Zone in the presence of Shredex, a company that specialises in recycling operations, and representatives of relevant trademark owners.

Fahed Gareeb Alshamsi, Executive Director of the Support Services Sector at Abu Dhabi Customs, said: “Intellectual property rights protection constitutes a top priority for Abu Dhabi Customs in light of the most important strategic objectives of UAE to achieve global leadership in the field of creativity and innovation.

“We firmly believe that we are the first line of defence to protect society and its economy from commercial fraud. Therefore, we are constantly working in cooperation with strategic partners to intensify efforts to prevent smuggling of counterfeit and adulterated goods to the markets by supporting the security readiness of customs centres and enhancing their inspection capabilities with the latest technology-based detection devices and advanced techniques, increasing the efficiency of Abu Dhabi Customs inspectors and their ability to distinguish between original and counterfeit products and goods, as well as prompting partnerships and cooperation with trademark owners to protect the safety of society.

“By recycling counterfeit goods to preserve the environment and protect it from damages that contradict the applicable environmental protection laws in the UAE, this will educate consumers on using or trading in counterfeit goods. This will contribute towards society, the country's economy and the importance of protecting intellectual property rights to enhance the process of sustainable development for business continuity and economic prosperity.”