European Commission might impose embargo on Chinese products

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Thursday, September 13, 2007

Meglena Kuneva, European Union Commissioner for Consumer Protection.

The European Commission (EU) is considering the imposition of an embargo on Chinese toys and consumer products. The EU Commissioner for Consumer Protection, Meglena Kuneva, said the aim is to increase pressure on the Chinese government to intensify its quality control in the manufacture of toys, toothpaste and certain food items.

Mattel, the world's largest toy producer, recently launched a massive product recall of Chinese-made products because their paint may contain excessive amounts of lead.

China has until October to respond with a detailed plan on how it will increase its monitoring of product safety; if it fails to respond, Kuneva announced, some products will be banned.

In testimony before the European Parliament on the twelfth of September, Kuneva underlined the necessity to protect children from possible harm: "My main message to our Chinese counterparts was that Europe does not and would not accept compromises when the safety of consumers, and in particular of children, is at stake."

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