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Imported cosmetics face stiffer regulation

Xu Wei
Updated: Nov 10,2014 7:10 AM     China Daily

A regulation covering imported cosmetics is poised to be tightened by China’s food and drug authority.

Under the revision, the China Food and Drug Administration will be able to carry out onsite inspections of imported products.

Public opinion is being sought on the revision, which was announced by the authority on Saturday.

One of the draft’s clauses requires an importer to present a certificate showing that a product has been placed on sale under specified cosmetics categories, such as skin whitening or sunscreen products.

According to the draft, imports must have labels in Chinese explaining the product details, such as the name, producer, ingredients and validity period.

The revision comes 24 years after the introduction of the country’s first regulation covering the cosmetics industry in January 1990.

Wu Zhen, deputy director of the China Food and Drug Administration, said at a work conference on the revision that the current regulation has failed to keep up with latest developments in the cosmetics industry.

“The social, industrial and supervisory environments of the cosmetics industry have all changed profoundly ... the legislation on the industry can provide the legal basis for the supervisory authorities,” he said.

The draft covers factors including the use of ingredients, production, certification from authorities, labeling and advertising, sales and penalties for misconduct.

Under the draft, cosmetics producers cannot exaggerate the benefits of their products, such as implying on the labeling or during promotions that they have medicinal qualities.

Retail sales of cosmetics in the country reached 162.5 billion yuan ($25.5 billion) in 2013 to register year-on-year growth of 13.3 percent, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.