Search

 

Cablegate: Despite One-Stop Lab, Producers Still Complain About

VZCZCXRO3039
RR RUEHCN RUEHGH RUEHVC
DE RUEHGZ #0225/01 1120730
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 210730Z APR 08
FM AMCONSUL GUANGZHOU
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 7051
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE
RUEAUSA/DEPT OF HHS WASHDC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASH DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEKJCS/DIA WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 GUANGZHOU 000225

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

STATE PASS CONSUMER PRODUCTS SAFETY COMMISSION RICH O'BRIEN/INTL
PROGRAMS
STATE PASS USTR CHINA OFFICE
STATE PASS HOMELAND SECURITY COUNCIL
STATE PASS IMPORT SAFETY WORKING GROUP


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ETRD EIND TBIO ECON PGOV CH
SUBJECT: Despite One-Stop Lab, Producers Still Complain about
Duplicate Testing

REF: A) GUANGZHOU 146; B) 2007 GUANGZHOU 1226

(U) This document is sensitive but unclassified. Please protect
accordingly. Not for release outside U.S. government channels. Not
for internet publication.

1. (SBU) Summary: Even with the opening of south China's first
joint-venture testing lab that will provide one-stop shopping for
third party and government testing, toy manufacturers in the Pearl
River Delta complain about the burden of meeting multiple standards.
They believe that that a new conformity assessment program
established by the U.S. toy industry and new laws issued by state
governments will further increase duplicate testing. In addition,
they find it difficult to obtain up-to-date information on recent
changes in various standards around the world. Toy industry
insiders continue to express hope for toy standards harmonization,
which would increase overall safety and reduce total costs for safe,
high quality toys around the world. End summary.

One Stop Testing -- Joint Venture Testing Lab Opens
--------------------------------------------- ------

2. (SBU) Intertek and the Guangdong branch of China Inspection and
Quarantine Service (CIQ) officially unveiled their new joint venture
toy lab on March 28. Intertek executives described the joint
venture as a critical step for south China's toy industry because it
will lower overall costs by reducing the need for duplicate testing
at third-party and government laboratories. Executives representing
several foreign toy buyers said they were impressed with the new lab
and pleased by the prospect of a streamlined testing process. Mr.
Chen Yang of Guangdong CIQ said the new lab doubles the CIQ's toy
testing capacity in Guangdong Province. Guangdong CIQ will assign
as many as 10 officers at a time to work at the joint venture
laboratory, mostly in oversight and management roles. Nevertheless,
one Intertek official boasted to Econoff at the opening ceremony
that although this lab adds significant space to Intertek's south
China toy testing capacity, the company's Shekou (Shenzhen) toy lab
is larger and more advanced.

But Duplicate Testing Increasing
--------------------------------

3. (U) Despite this step forward in streamlining testing, south
China's toy makers complain that they feel besieged by external
safety and compliance mandates. Some large firms said the recently
proposed Toy Safety Coordination Initiative (TSCI), proposed by the
U.S. toy industry and standards body American National Standards
Institute (ANSI), was similar to other standards but less strict
than testing and safety requirements imposed by major U.S. buyers
like Wal-Mart and Toys R Us. Several smaller firms and the
Guangdong Toy Association complained that the new TSCI proposal
would virtually duplicate China's safety standards for toys sold
domestically (known as the China Compulsory Certification mark, or
"3C" mark), raising the costs for toy makers, and possibly for
consumers, by a large margin. Some testing firms also raised
questions about the effect of U.S. state governments imposing their
own safety requirements, potentially adding another layer of
complexity to the current regulatory environment.

Information Dissemination Needs Improvement
-------------------------------------------

4. (U) Many toy manufacturers tell us they rely heavily on
third-party testing organizations for information on new standards.
Testing companies and the Guangdong Toy Association said they have
dedicated staff working to obtain the latest safety requirements
from importing countries, as well as dissemination strategies
including seminars, postal mailings and email, websites and other
forms of outreach. Many manufacturers and testing companies have
told us of the need for more centralized release of standards
information, complaining that China's General Administration of
Quality Supervision and Quarantine (AQSIQ) and Ministry of Commerce
(MOFCOM) do not seem well prepared to disseminate timely, accurate
information to China's toy industry.

5. (U) China's authorities are reportedly taking a more active role
in the area of soliciting industry comments to foreign standards

GUANGZHOU 00000225 002 OF 002


changes. Toy makers and their industry association said AQSIQ and
MOFCOM had translated proposed U.S. and EU regulations into Chinese
and requested specific comments from industry through local CIQ
offices. CIQ officials indicated to industry contacts that their
comments would be conveyed to foreign governments deliberating new
toy safety regulations.

Calling Again for Harmonized Standards
--------------------------------------

6. (U) There is broad agreement among manufacturers and testing
companies that standards harmonization between different countries
and buyers would be the most effective strategy for increasing toy
safety and reducing costs. They emphasized that under the current
system there is no way to avoid conducting a separate battery of
tests to demonstrate compliance with each set of standards. Many
companies see the rapidly changing regulatory environment as a
serious business challenge. Several pointed out that uncertainties
over changing regulations could force toy makers to incur
substantial new capital costs without assurance that the new
regulations will stabilize in coming years.

GOLDBERG

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC