SHANGHAI — China’s expertise in the manufacturing of counterfeit accessories is well-known but a new, subtler form of imitation products is emerging from the country’s factories.
Known as “tong kuan” or “look-alike” products, they bear a striking resemblance to specific products from well-known designer brands — especially shoes and handbags — in terms of shape and silhouette. But unlike outright fakes, the products don’t feature phony logos and nameplates of the brands they emulate. They might bear labels resembling European brands — like a triangle reminiscent of Prada’s logo — imprinted with the name of a local Chinese company or a Western (often vaguely Italian) sounding name, to denote quality.
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