Customers are entitled by law to demand that substandard products be recalled unconditionally the China Consumers Association (CCA) explained on Thursday.
Neodymium and chromium - substances banned in cosmetics and which can cause allergic dermatitis and eczema - were detected last week in the Japanese cosmetic brand SK-II.
P&G China, the country's distributor of SK-II, is in the process of recalling the product. However, consumers are required to sign a so-called "safe product" agreement when they return their SK-II. By signing the document customers are acknowledging their purchase was safe.
Referring to these requirements CCA spokesman Wu Gaohan told Xinhua that companies should abide by the law and set no conditions on the return of withdrawn products.
"Any new conditions that the company tries to impose are either invalid or illegal," said Wu. "Consumers have to learn to protect their own rights and interests." The CCA said it would keep a close watch on the case.
(Xinhua News Agency September 22, 2006)