CHINA should eradicate the rampant growth ''copycat'' activities if it wants to re-enter the General Agreements on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), according to veteran Hongkong politician Ms Maria Tam Wai-chu. The newly-appointed Hongkong delegate to the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference called for the stepping up of the investigations and prosecution of activities that infringed upon copyrights. This would enhance the reputation of China in the international community, attract more foreign funds for the development of high-end and value-added products, as well as increasing the chances of rejoining the world trade body, Ms Tam said. Noting the coastal region had already become a base for fake goods, she said the issue was important in any talks in GATT because such activities could damage the job opportunities of other countries. Apart from increasing the threat of retributive trade sanctions from other countries, Ms Tam said fake products would turn away foreign investors. The development of industry and commerce and the exchange of skill would be directly affected. Ms Tam said some businessmen from Hongkong and Macau had taken advantage of the low costs in China to develop fake products. It would be difficult to crack down on such activities as mainland factories might not be aware of the issue of copyrights and that the foreign investors were based outside China, she said. ''But there should be no further delay [in launching a crackdown],'' she said. Ms Tam said the experience of Hongkong was that it had taken more than two decades to pass the laws empowering the authorities to launch more severe measures to eradicate malpractices.