DTI halts sale of non
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DTI halts sale of non

Apr 07, 2024

The DTI-Consumer Protection Group (CPG), through the Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau (FTEB) swept over 15,073 units of uncertified ceramic tiles worth P1.690 million and inspected vape shops during enforcement operations.

Consumer Protection Group (CPG) Undersecretary Atty. Ruth B. Castelo and DTI-Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau (FTEB) Director Atty. Fhillip D. Sawali sealing uncertified ceramic tiles from a firm in Marikina City, on 26 July 2023.

Of the 20 firms inspected, three Notices of Violation (NOV) were issued to those selling uncertified ceramic tiles, while two to those selling non-compliant vape products, and they were ordered to submit an explanation within 48 hours from receipt thereof.

Castelo emphasized that the Department safeguards Filipinos’ right to safe and high-quality consumer products, such as ceramic materials.

“The ceramic materials we sealed today are primarily used in houses, offices, and different industries, such as the construction industry. Without the Philippine Standard (PS) Quality and/or Safety Mark and Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) Sticker and other mandatory labels, these non-conforming products would compromise durability, safety, and physical characteristics that make them hygienically safe,” Castelo said.

In addition, the DTI team inspected seven vape shops selling vaporized nicotine and non-nicotine products and novel tobacco products. Upon inspection, the two vape shops were found selling vape products with flavors or cartoon characters that are appealing to minors. The non-compliant shops were issued an NOV, requiring each to submit a written explanation within 48 hours from receipt thereof.

With the confiscation of only 41 units worth P14,250.00, the DTI noted that months of advocacy campaigns and enforcement operations had increased vape shops’ awareness of and compliance with the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act No. 11900, known as the Vaporized Nicotine and Non-nicotine Products and Novel Tobacco Products Regulation.

Meanwhile, the DTI also monitored prices of school supplies following the issuance of the Gabay sa Pamimili Ng School Supplies, or the price guide bulletin.

The “Gabay sa Pamimili ng School Supplies” contains 116 Shelf Keeping Units (SKUs), including notebooks (composition, spiral, and writing), pad papers (Grades I - IV and intermediate), pencils, ballpoint pens, crayons, erasers, sharpeners, and rulers.

Castelo reiterated that while prices of some products have remained unaffected by recent market trends, other school supplies saw price increases. While inevitable due to the increased global cost of primary raw materials, the Department assured the public that the prices remain reasonable and within reach to support the Department of Education’s Balik Eskwela program.

The DTI also engaged in a campaign against uncertified items in the market, including the enforcement of technical regulations mandating compliance with Philippine Standard Certification Mark Schemes, particularly Department Administrative Order No. 02, Series of 2007.

To protect consumers or potential buyers of electrical and electronic products; mechanical or building and construction materials; and chemical and other consumer products and systems, DTI – Bureau of Philippine Standards (DTI-BPS) covers products and systems through implementing Mandatory Product Certification Schemes: the PS Quality and/or Safety Certification Mark Licensing Scheme and the ICC Certification Scheme.

Republic Act No. 7581, as amended by R.A. 10623, or the Price Act, gives the DTI and other implementing agencies, such as the Department of Agriculture, Department of Health, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and Department of Energy, the mandate of ensuring the availability of basic necessities and prime commodities at reasonable prices at all times without denying legitimate businesses a fair return on investment.

The DTI-FTEB monitors weekly the price and supply of basic necessities such as, but not limited to, canned sardines, processed milk, powdered milk, coffee, bread, instant noodles, salt, detergent soap, bottled water, and candles; and prime commodities such as, but not limited to, canned meat, vinegar, patis, soy sauce, toilet soap, paper, school supplies, batteries, flour, cement, G.I. Sheets, hollow blocks, construction nails, light bulbs, electrical supplies, and steel wires.

Sawali also stressed that its heightened monitoring and enforcement operations should serve as strong warning to violators.