Importers of Chinese goods told to ensure buyers' safety

DUBAI — All importers of Chinese goods in the UAE have been advised by the Chinese authorities to specify in their contract instructions in both English and Arabic and brochures to be included in the shipped goods to ensure the safety and security of the buyers, particularly those acquiring toys, electronic and electrical gadgets.

By Lily B. Libo-on (Our staff reporter)

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Published: Mon 28 Jul 2008, 1:39 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 6:18 PM

In a statement issued yesterday, the Commercial Counsellor in the Chinese Consulate-General in Dubai, Yi Zhang, promised to resolve the complaints regarding sub-standard Chinese goods reaching the UAE and the refusal of local importers to make final payment.

He said the Economic and Commercial Section in the Chinese consulate is monitoring such cases and has found out that the main cause of complaints was miscommunication and only a few cases involved fraudulent transactions.

He said that most of the goods in question do not carry brochures and instructions on their proper usage, which causes them to break down easily, which leads to the allegations of sub-standard quality. The UAE is China's biggest trade partner with its exports and imports currently valued at $20 billion, about 10 per cent of which involved in disputes between the Chinese exporters and importers in UAE.

Zhang said the complaints reaching the consulate from the local importers involved the quality of products and delay in the delivery of goods to the UAE.

The Chinese exporters, on the other hand — about 3,000 of them, most of them in Dubai — complain of non-payment or delayed payment after delivery. Importers pay only 20-30 per cent at the time of placing the purchase order, he said.

The commercial counsellor said that although China is keeping a strict check on quality control of goods exported worldwide, the accusation of sub-standard goods are being hurled at the exporters, which the Chinese consulate feels is mostly the result of misunderstanding and miscommunication between the contracting parties.

Zhang said the majority of Chinese exporters cannot speak or understand English and they do not understand fully what the importers in UAE want.

"To resolve this problem, we have asked both the importers in the UAE and Chinese exporters to forward to us all their communications in order to settle the disputes through bilateral negotiations," he pointed out.

Nearly 80 per cent of complaints of Chinese exporters involve non-payment of balance payments after delivery of goods, Zhang said, adding that a mere five per cent of the complaints were related to fraudulent transactions involving companies that vanished after taking delivery of goods.

He, however, clarified that those involved in fraudulent transactions were not locals, but businessmen who were using Dubai as a transit point for Chinese goods to be shipped to Africa and Middle East countries.

"We have reported them to the police, and the Chinese exporters have been asked to file cases in the courts," he said. "Others are exporting Chinese products in order to register their companies in Dubai."

Most of the reasons put forward by UAE exporters for refusal to pay or delay balance payments include non-profitability because of market fluctuations and demand for reduction of prices.

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