2 February 2013

Tanzania: Influx of Fake Goods Hinders Healthy Competition

Dodoma — DESPITE the application of the Pre-Shipment Verification of Conformity to Stan- dards (PVOC) Act through the Tanzania Bureau of Standard (TBS) effective as from February last year, sub-standard and fake products continue to flood markets to the disadvantage of consumers.

The National Assembly was informed of the existing 32 unofficial docking sites between Dar es Salaam and Bagamoyo, complicating efforts to control such products from entering the country.

The Deputy Minister for Industries and Trade, Mr Gregory Teu said concerted efforts are necessary to stop the illegal business. He was responding to a basic question posed by Masoud Abdallah Salim (CUF, Mtambile), who demanded an explanation from government as to when substandard products would stop flooding markets, charging that such goods are causing serious loss to consumers.

The deputy minister said smugglers have learnt new tricks to avoid the long arm of the government. "Control can best be achieved if different stakeholders join hands. These include the police, the Tanzania Food and Drug Authority (TFDA) and the general public.

Low quality products such as motor vehicles and motorcycle tyres, milk for babies, electric cables and cooking oil have been impounded and destroyed. Legal measures have also been taken against implicated traders," Mr Teo explained.

He clarified on the difference between fake products and sub-standard products saying that fake products have imitated logos of approved producers while products that are below standard do not meet national or international standards, he said.

On control measures ad- opted by TBS and other authorities, the deputy minister said physical inspections have been carried out frequently and consignments were taken to the dumpsites for destruction.

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