WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission entered into a Memorandum of Understanding
today with the government of the People’s Republic of China whereby both sides agree to work together to provide greater protections of the health of consumers in the United States and China.
CPSC Chairman Hal Stratton signed the MOU with Minister Li Changjiang of the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the People’s Republic of China during a ceremony at the U.S. Department of Commerce. According to Chairman Stratton, “The signing of this agreement with the government of the People’s Republic of China will facilitate a cooperative relationship, one in which we hope to work together to reduce deaths and injuries to children and consumers both in the United States and in China.”
By formalizing a working relationship between the two governments, the CPSC and AQSIQ have committed to the exchange of scientific, technical, and regulatory information to help ensure the quality, safety and proper labeling of consumer products. The information exchange includes the training of laboratory and inspection personnel in China.
“The goal of the new agreement is to facilitate information sharing regarding U.S. mandatory and voluntary consumer safety standards with Chinese officials and help educate Chinese manufacturers and importers about their obligation to produce safe products bound for the U.S.,” Stratton said. U.S. federal safety standards for the construction of bicycle helmets, the amount of flash powder allowed in consumer fireworks and the inclusion of a child-resistant mechanism on cigarette lighters—all products imported from China-- have saved hundreds of lives and prevented many more injuries.
Because of the number of products under CPSC’s jurisdiction that are manufactured in China, the agency has taken a particularly proactive approach in working with the People’s Republic of China on consumer product safety issues. Chairman Stratton is the first CPSC Commissioner to visit China in person. Last month, he visited with Minister Li Changjiang in Beijing to finalize provisions of the MOU. In June of this year, Chairman Stratton will return to Guangzhou (formerly Canton) in Guangdong Province, P.R.C. to attend the International Organization of Standardization conference on toy safety standards and further meet with Chinese officials involved with consumer safety standards.