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PACP put an end to the sale of several tea and coffee containers for containing asbestos unless they are certified as asbestos-free

08/11/2017

Head of the Quality Control Department:  continuous efforts to control the defective commodities that harm the health, and safety of the consumers.
Head of the Chemical Materials Department at the Ministry of Environment: The danger of this substance is the fragmentation and air-borne micro-fibers that can cause dangerous diseases. The substance is banned under the Rotterdam Convention for its’ danger  

 

 

In implementation of decision No.245/2017, issued lately by H.E. Dr.Said Khamis Al-Kaabi, PACP Chairman banning the commodities that contain asbestos, PACP staff conducted inspection campaigns on the venues that sell containers and household products to check the materials of these products that might harm the health and safety of the consumers. The lab testing of tea and coffee containers revealed that they contain asbestos which is a harmful substance on the health and safety, a substance that is globally warned against and banned.
As a result of more than one test to confirm that, PACP issued a directive to ban the selling and dealing of a number of the beverage containers in the market, and gave instruction to providers that they must submit certification to prove that the products are free of asbestos, the directive shall be implemented on the 1st of December 2017, to give a chance for testing on the available products and to get the documentation. PACP also decided to halt the sale of these products and pull the tested products off the markets after discovering that they contain asbestos.  

The Head of the Quality Control Department in PACP, Ms. Fahima Amir Al-Hamzy stated:” PACP’s decision of halting the sale of the tea and coffee containers that have asbestos, came as a part of PACP’s efforts to protect the health of the consumers”, confirming that the substance is globally banned, therefore, PACP always, control and quality check the commodities and all other matters related to the markets and controls the defective commodities that harm the health and safety of the consumers.
She further added: PACP is aiming at raising awareness of the consumers regarding this substance and, encourage them to keep up with the latest developments pertaining to the banned chemical substances, in particular, asbestos and other raw materials that it is made from. Ms. Al-Hamzy emphasized that the international organizations including WHO indicated that this substance is harmful, both to humans and to the environment.
The Head of the Quality Control Department outlined the importance of proper disposal of such commodities by avoiding breakage and disposing them in trash containers, to avoid the debris that spreads by air that they produce when they break.
She also indicated that the Minister of Commerce and Industry issued decision No.139/2017, to ban the import of commodities and products to make sure that there are no products that contain this substance which proves how dangerous it is.
Mr. Ahmed Harib Al-Bulushi, the Head of Chemical Materials Department at the Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs, mentioned that asbestos is a substance used in a number of industries and areas that are essential for consumers, as this substance is used in construction, house roofs, manufacturing interior and exterior partitions, sewage pipes, coating of fire resistant doors and metal vaults, car brakes, clothes, firefighting, gloves, hairdryers, ovens and as an insulation material in the electric transformers and wires.
He further added: The danger of asbestos is the fragmentation and air-borne micro-fibers that cannot be seen by the naked eye, and if inhaled, could cause major health problems and serious diseases such as throat, lung, stomach and intestinal cancer, therefore many countries enacted rules and regulations that completely ban the use, production, manufacturing or importing of asbestos and its products, in accordance with the Rotterdam Convention which Oman joined in  1999, and the Royal Decree No.81/99. Asbestos will be substituted by less harmful or harmless alternatives.
Mr. Ahmed Juma Al-Zidjali, the Head of Waste Management in the Environmental Control Department at the Ministry of Environment , mentioned that the effects of asbestos on health depends on the duration of the exposure and the intensity of exposure to the asbestos fibers, as the disease symptoms appear after the chronic exposer through various activities and that might take 20 years, therefore, all kinds of asbestos are banned in usage and dealing in Oman and that this matter is under the control of Chemical Materials Department.
He also added that the asbestos wastes are classified as dangerous according to the classification by Basel Convention, and in accordance with the Ministry Decision No.18/93 regarding the management of dangerous waste, the fore, the dealing and storage methodology is implemented according to the procedures stipulated in the decision, as there is no agreement in Oman at the moment in terms of permanent disposal of asbestos waste.

 

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CONSUMER LINE

 No one imagined that greed and deviousness would reach such a staggering level that thought exist only in movies and investigative drama shows , yet it became a stark reality when some merchants sought to make a profit on the account of health and safety of the young and adults alike utilizing the God-given intellect that they posses into destruction and evil instead of serving public good , the devious plan used ( Back to school ) season by carving holes inside books and hiding chewing tobacco inside in away from the inspectors notice targeting the younger generation with these destructive materials that effect the health , mind and safety of our kids .
 The Judicial officers noticed that consumers come very frequently to a specific shop during one of the inspection tours which raised their suspicions to strengthening the monitoring and follow up on that matter , students were spotted in the shop as well , the Officers expediently intervened to inspect the shop , the inspection did not reveal anything at first , however , the officers noticed a stack of books and decided to inspect it , surprisingly , they found more than 600 pouches of chewing tobacco on its way to be sold and distributed on consumers and students , the officers immediately issued a violation and referred the case to the General Prosecution to deal with the matter as per the Law


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Sultanate of Oman