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Trinidad has problem with illegal trade

Regional 05 Jun, 2020 Follow News

Trinidad has a problem with counterfeit goods

A Trinidadian businessman believes that Trinidad and Tobago has an unwelcome trading reputation for handling knockoff items and trafficking illegal goods.

Managing Director of Bastion Market Intelligence Ltd in Port-of Spain, Roger Montero, believes that if the problems of illicit trade are addressed, then this country can get an improved ranking in the next Global Illicit Trade Environment Index. Montero noted that illicit trade is two-fold. He said the most tangible includes the trafficking of narcotics, humans, weapons, cigarettes, alcohol, counterfeit cash and wildlife.

The intangible part, he said, is being carried out virtually as cyber-attacks, where criminal elements hack into your computer or mobile systems and hold victims to ransom. This involves the use of malware, spyware and password hacking.

“It is becoming more and more pervasive,” Montero said. The index, produced by the Economist Intelligence Unit and Commissioned by the Transnational Alliance to Combat Illicit Trade was last published in 2018, and ranked T&T as 75th out of 84 countries.

“Distributors are concerned with making money and are not helping to increase awareness on illicitly traded goods – and that’s what they need to do. You will find products from Trinidad in other markets which were smuggled in as contraband, and even shipped back to Trinidad for resale,” he added.

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