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FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » Sri Lanka’s traders not sensitive enough to respect rights of consumers: CAA

Sri Lanka’s traders not sensitive enough to respect rights of consumers: CAA

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Octopus

Octopus
Expert
Expert
http://www.lankabusinessonline.com/news/sri-lanka%E2%80%99s-traders-not-sensitive-enough-to-respect-rights-of-consumers:-caa/541721629


Mar 17, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s business community and traders are not sensitive enough to respect the rights of the consumers and their safety, a senior official said.
“Monitoring mechanisms of the regulatory authorities are not sufficient to eliminate the malpractices perpetrated through the supply chain,” Chandrika Thilakarathne, director, consumer affairs and information, Consumer Affairs Authority said.
“The surveillance mechanism is not powerful enough to cover the entire country.”

Most business, she says think only of short term profit and lack concern on a better customer service.

“Business community has poor respect towards consumer rights.”

She was speaking at a forum to mark world consumer rights day organized by the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS) in Colombo.

Thilakarathne says there are several other challenges as well faced by the regulators like insufficient testing facilities to get analytical reports on food items.

“Most of the testing labs are not accredited and the reports can be challenged. Therefore, more emphasis has to be placed in developing and promoting accredited laboratory network which is capable of addressing the needs of the food industry as well as the regulators.”

Further, she says Sri Lanka has to give due consideration on development of a food storage system, in order to ensure food safety and food security for its people.

“Prosecution of offenders is only a reactive measure to ensure food safety and a less effective method in the long term.”

“Promoting the industry for self-regulation is one option. But further thoughts are necessary on the level of success as a developing country.”

Consumers also have a big role to play and be vigilant about what they purchase. They need to check if the product is labelled properly, whether the expiry date is correctly mentioned, whether the product is free from external damages etc.

The IPS also launched a report to mark the day titled; report on implementation of school canteen guidelines.

The first copy of the report was handed over to chief guest at the event Rishard Bathiudeen, minister of Industry and Commerce.

Senior Citizen

Senior Citizen
Senior Manager - Equity Analytics
Senior Manager - Equity Analytics
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Yes! Respect begets respect.

The business community and traders should be able to respect the politicians in power first!

If there is NO good governance how can one expect such respect for the consumer? Once the government, corporations, departments, law enforcement authorities, religious personalities and disciplinarians command that respect then only will the commercial entities respect some abstract laws.

Start with religious and law enforcement authorities. Do they all show respect and earn our respect? Can you expect a police officer not to accept a bribe? Do all the clergy from all the deniminations behave in a respectful manner?

There is along way to go. Start with the basics. Start small, stick to it and then have a system to improve laws and regulations.

First is do we have a site to the CAA where people can call or write or email a complaint?

Is there a procedure to educate people that they have the responsibility to complain?

Do they know how to complain and what to complain about?

Do they know their rights as consumers?

Are there reading or educational materials freely available and made accessible to them so that their rights could be exercised?

This is the only way forward!

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