14 hardware stores face raps for substandard supplies: DTI

SUBSTANDARD PRODUCTS. A staff from the Consumer Protection Division of the Department of Trade and Industry in Central Visayas (DTI-7) measures a deformed bar in a hardware store in Cebu that allegedly sells 'uncertified, inferior, and substandard' construction and hardware products in an operation on Thursday (June 06, 2019). DTI-7 Regional Director Asteria Caberte vowed to widen their inspection to include all hardware and construction establishments in the region. (Photo courtesy of Jojisilia Villamor/DTI-7 PIO)

By: John Rey Saavedra

CEBU CITY — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) 7 (Central Visayas) on Friday reported that 14 retailers of construction and hardware materials in Cebu are facing possible charges for selling substandard products.

Asteria Caberte, DTI-7 director, said the charges sprung from the notices of violation (NOV) her office issued against establishments found selling “uncertified, inferior, or substandard” construction and hardware products.

“To avoid compromising consumers’ safety, the department goes after and cracks down (on) establishments that sell uncertified, inferior, or substandard products,” Caberte said in a statement obtained by the Philippine News Agency (PNA).

In a series of operations in Cebu, DTI-7 operatives confiscated re-rolled steel bars, incandescent bulbs, and PVC electrical tapes, among others, because they were found to be substandard in quality, she said.
Caberte vowed to conduct regionwide operations against erring construction and hardware stores in Central Visayas within the year, “with monitoring to be done in collaboration with DTI regional and provincial staff from the Consumer Protection Division.”

“DTI’s intensified monitoring and enforcement efforts include going after unscrupulous importers, traders, and retailers that disregard the Consumer Act (Republic Act 7394) and Product Standards Law (RA 4109),” she said.

“As stated in the Standards Law, the importation, distribution, offer for sale or manufacture of any product covered by mandatory product certification, which does not bear the BPS (Bureau of Product Standards) required identification and product markings is prohibited,” she added.

Caberte said most retailers who were recently given notices of violations were found to have violated the Consumer Act that prohibits “deceptive sales act or practices claiming a consumer product is of a particular standard, quality, grade, style or model when in fact it is not.”

The regional director of DTI encouraged the public to report any substandard products or harmful business practices by bringing their complaints to the DTI’s consumer care hotline 1-384 (1-DTI) or email to consumercare@dti.gov.ph. (PNA)

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