The world still trusts the quality of China's products despite a
string of recalls in recent months, a senior Chinese official has
"During the first eight months of this year, China's exports
grew by 23.3 percent, which shows that our exports have not been
hit by these recalls," said Wei Chuanzhong, vice-minister of the
General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and
Speaking at a press conference in the Chinese embassy in
Washington DC on Monday, he said: "Some Chinese manufacturers said
they had received even more orders and their workers are busy
trying to meet them."
Wei stressed that the Chinese government had strengthened
measures to ensure product safety.
Some of the toys recalled in the US were because of real quality
and safety concerns. But the majority of them were recalled because
of design faults or the difference between safety standards in
China and the US, he said.
US-based toy giant Mattel has recalled about 22 million
China-made toys this year. But it apologized formally to China
because a vast majority of the recalls were because of design
In another development, the deputy director of AQSIQ's import
and export food safety bureau, Li Chaowei, said China is eager to
learn from advanced global experiences in food quality management,
including the European Union's rapid alert system for food and feed
(RASFF) and the US food recall system.
"Apart from increasing trade globalization we also have to
become more familiar with the food management systems of other
countries and regions to improve the quality of exports," Li told a
three-day workshop on RASFF in Beijing yesterday.
The RASFF notifies not only member states, but also other
countries of problem goods to ensure their removal from shelves and
protect consumers, head of the alert system Jose Luis de Felipe
It has sent officials to Bangkok, Buenos Aires and Beijing this
year to help have such a system in place. "The idea behind these
seminars is first of all to share our experience with other
countries," De Felipe told a news conference.
"The long-term intention is to create some kind of regional
network, like we have in the EU, in order to create a worldwide
alert system, which can be set up and probably managed by the World
Health Organization with (the help of other) international
institutions," he said.
Li said China, too, has a similar food safety alert system but
international collaboration is important.
China takes food safety seriously and has begun a nationwide
campaign, but "there still is a long way to go".
Several government departments in China are responsible for food
safety, and they have their own networks for information exchange
and communication, he said.
"We need a more integrated information exchange network on the
national level to ensure food safety and a rapid response," he
(China Daily November 7, 2007)