HA NOI (VNS)— Stricter import controls were necessary to prevent products of unverified quality being sold on the domestic market, said Nguyen Huu Thien, former director of the General Department of Standards, Measurements and Quality.
Rumours had spread lately that products, including fruit, toys and bras, contained toxic materials which could harm people's health.
He said Market Watch, under the Ministry of Industry and Trade, and other agencies had collected suspected products and tested them but in the meantime the rumours had continued and enterprises who had followed correct procedures had suffered losses in sales and reputation.
"Importing companies needed to be better aware of their responsibilities concerning product quality," he said.
Before importing goods, they should ask about the production processes and products that were eligible to be imported into Viet Nam.
At present, quality testing by manufacturers was not being given enough attention, which caused State testing agencies to become overloaded with products of unconfirmed quality.
General Department deputy director Tran Van Vinh said it was impossible for any agency to test all products coming in to Viet Nam.
Under current regulations, importers must ensure the quality and eligibility of their products in accordance with Vietnamese laws.
He urged that stricter rules be introduced to make importers more responsible for their products.
Vinh said also that the large amount of smuggled goods was adding to the problem.
For example, he recommended products with unclear origins and of unverified quality be kept under custody at border gates until the importer could show documents to prove origin and quality.
Vinh also said testing processes had shortcomings, including insufficient equipment and cumbersome administrative procedures. — VNS