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China to halt imports of SK-II if problems show up again
Latest Updated by 2006-09-21 09:33:37
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(Customers wait in line to return SK-II skincare products in Shanghai on Wednesday, September 20, 2006. Photo: Xinhua)

China will halt imports of SK-II products if excessive traces of heavy metals are detected again in the future, said an official with the state quality watchdog.

Neodymium and chromium - substances banned in cosmetics which can cause allergic dermatitis and eczema - were detected last week in the Japanese cosmetic brand SK-II.

"If serious quality problems were found again, China would ban imports of SK-II products," said the official with the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine.

The official said that "quality and quarantine departments will keep a close eye on products that concern consumers' safety and health".

The administration urged the cosmetics producer to strictly follow China's quality standards to ensure people's health.

SK-II, a famous Japanese cosmetic brand, which claims to have whitening and lifting effects on skin, is widely used by Chinese women.

P&G China, the distributor of SK-II in China, has begun to recall the suspect products. As of Monday, nine kinds of problematic products had been removed from 13 SK-II shops in Beijing.

The cosmetics maker, however, is requiring consumers to sign a so-called "safe product" agreement, in which they recognize that the SK-II products they bought are safe before being able to hand back the harmful products.

"Otherwise, the products cannot be withdrawn", said a telephone operator of the SK-II company in China.

An employee with the company's Beijing branch said: "We believe only a small batch of products suffered the problem."

Qiu Baochang, a lawyer with the Beijing lawyer association, said the agreement is inequitable and consumers can refuse to sign it.
Editor: Yan

By: Source: China View website
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