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240 new items to face compulsory quality control

ByRajeev Jayaswal, New Delhi
Dec 31, 2023 10:26 PM IST

India plans to implement compulsory quality control measures for at least 240 new items in 2024, including electric fans, freezers, water bottles, and sanitary napkins. The move aims to encourage Indian manufacturers to produce high-quality products for the local market and gain a premium in overseas markets. The measures will also help curb the influx of low-quality Chinese products. The quality control orders will be implemented throughout the year, starting on January 1, 2024. Compliance with the orders will be mandatory and non-compliance will result in fines or imprisonment.

India has lined up at least 240 new items such as electric fans, freezers, water bottles, sanitary napkins, aluminium cans and plywood to be brought under compulsory quality control in 2024 to nudge Indian manufacturers for producing quality products for local consumers and also command premium in overseas markets, two officials said.

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Stringent quality control orders (QCOs) for domestic manufacturing or imports of at least 240 items are already notified and will be implemented on specific dates throughout 2024, starting January 1, they said, requesting anonymity. The move will help to check the influx of low-quality Chinese products in the Indian market, one of them said.

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QCOs on about two-dozen goods, proposed by the ministry textiles and the department for promotion of industry and internal trade (DPIIT), will kick-in immediately on the first day of 2024, the second official said. These products include needle- punched non- woven geobags, polypropylene multifilament woven geobags, jute geotextiles, various types of geotextiles, high density polyethylene, geostrip used as soil reinforcement, household refrigerating appliances and freezers.

About three-dozen more QCOs issued by the department of chemicals and petrochemicals, DPIIT and the steel ministry will trigger later in January, he said. Some of these items are polyethylene material for moulding, utility lighters, potable water bottles of copper, stainless steel and aluminium, insulated flasks and containers, flush bolts, stainless steel sliding door bolts and ferronickel.

QCOs are a World Trade Organisation (WTO)-compliant mechanism that allows a country to make compliance to its standards compulsory for selling specified goods in its market to protect of human, animal or plant health, prevention of unfair trade practices and national security. QCOs are issued by the central government that make the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) certification mandatory to sell notified goods in India for both domestic manufacturers and importers. Non-compliance attracts a fine or imprisonment, or both.

February will trigger mandatory BIS certifications for another three dozen products such as morpholine, methanol, electric ceiling fans, fire extinguishers, domestic gas stoves, stainless steel cookware, stainless steel sinks, aluminium cans for beverages, veneered particle boards, cast iron manhole covers and frames and various types of plywood, the second official said.

Similarly, about 145 QCOs will be effective on different dates between March and November, he added. These items include ethylene dichloride, polycarbonate, foil for pharmaceutical packaging, sanitary napkins, disposable baby diaper, shoe covers, bed sheets and pillow cover, bitumen drums, non-metal helmet for firemen, industrial safety helmets, braided nylon ropes for mountaineering, safes, rubber gaskets for pressure cookers and water treatment system for drinking.

“QCOs are in lines with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of Make in India, Make for the World. For example, after QCOs on toys were enforced in January 2021, India’s exports of toys has jumped by over by 60% and imports fell by over 70%. The move has also eliminated risks to the health of Indian children from cheaper but substandard toys largely imported from China,” the first official said.

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