Taobao Added To Counterfeit Watch List

The Office of the United States Trade Representative has announced that Alibaba's Taobao platform has been added to a counterfeit watch list. The marketplace was placed on its list of 'notorious markets' for offering so many fake goods. Whilst there is no penalty for the website's new ranking, it is expected to damage Taobao's reputation somewhat to have such an official link to counterfeiting. eMarketer has also suggested that the inclusion in the list, and subsequent reputation damage, will “make it harder for Alibaba to entice Western businesses to establish branded storefronts on [sister site] Tmall”. Alibaba has struggled with the marketplace's reputation for some time now, and Taobao has appeared on the list previously, before being removed in 2012.