Panama’s fight against illicit trade
A group of three Panamanian companies, with the support of the Board of the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama, have created a team to fight organized crime.
In January 2014, the Commission against illicit trade (Comisión Contra el Comercio Ilícito) was founded.The group meets once a month with the main objective to raise the level of awareness of the negative impact that counterfeit products have on the economy.
In addition, representatives of the National Customs Authority, National Police and the Attorney General of Panama, voiced concern about how money originating in illicit trade (such as smuggling, piracy and counterfeiting) is used to sponsor and support offenses linked to organized crime. For example, local authorities reported that during the period between January and May 2015, the counterfeit goods seized by authorities had a value of US $109 million plus.
Other companies and organizations such as AMCHAM PANAMA and Business Alliance for Secure Commerce (BASC) have expressed support to the initiative.