The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) ramped up enforcement operations net Php235,505.00 uncertified Christmas lights in the Metro from September to 27 December 2022; and Php11,885.00 unlicensed fireworks in Bocaue, Bulacan, on 27 December 2022.
In time with the Holiday Season, Consumer Protection Group (CPG) Undersecretary Atty. Ruth B. Castelo led the DTI – Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau (DTI-FTEB) enforcement teams in inspecting retail firms selling fireworks and Christmas lights.
The heightened inspection resulted in the seizure of 675 units of uncertified Christmas lights and 227 pieces of unlicensed fireworks.
Therefore, out of the 71 monitored retail firms 10 were issued with a Notice of Violation (NOV) for selling uncertified Christmas Lights. Moreover, out of the 31 inspected establishments six (6) received an NOV for selling unlicensed fireworks. As part of the due process, the representative of the stores was given 48 hours to provide an explanation related to the findings of noncompliance.
To ensure product quality and safety, the DTI encouraged the public to purchase fireworks with the Philippine Standard (PS) mark; and Christmas lights bearing either the PS Mark or the Import Commodity Clearance (ICC).
The Department also advised consumers to be guided by the list of PS-licensed fireworks brands and companies released by the DTI – Bureau of Philippine Standards (DTI-BPS) on 19 December 2022.
The nationwide campaign of DTI against unlicensed fireworks and uncertified items in the market underscores the enforcement of DTI technical regulations mandating compliance with Philippine Standard Certification Mark Schemes, particularly Department Administrative Order No. 02, Series of 2007.
“Upholding consumer safety makes the Holiday celebration brighter; with this, we always remind the consuming public to only buy licensed fireworks and certified Christmas lights that have undergone and passed the DTI testing schemes,” said Usec. Castelo.
Usec. Castelo also reiterated that while the DTI enforcement activities aim to protect Filipino consumers’ right to safety; these also serve as a reminder of the consumers’ responsibility to be vigilant, especially when buying Christmas lights and fireworks to celebrate the Holidays.
To protect consumers or potential buyers of electrical and electronic products; mechanical or building and construction materials; and chemical and other consumer products and systems, DTI-BPS regulates 111 products and systems through implementing Mandatory Product Certification Schemes: the PS Quality and/or Safety Certification Mark Licensing Scheme and the ICC Certification Scheme.
From January to November 2022, FTEB has already confiscated 219,693 pieces of uncertified products worth Php67,490,780.90
The DTI enjoins consumers to report retailers, distributors, and manufacturers that sell uncertified items, through the Consumer Care Hotline at DTI (1-384) or email@example.com