SAIC Notice on Comprehensively Creating Trial Sites for Consumer Complaints Disclosure 

Unofficial Translation

Notice of the State Administration for Industry and Commerce on Comprehensively Creating Trial Sites for Consumer Complaints Disclosure 

SAIC Protocol no. 241 [2017]

    

To all provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities, and municipal administrations for industry and commerce, market supervision and management departments:

  

The disclosure of consumer complaints is a new exploration in strengthening the supervision of the public opinion, pushing forward consumer protection and shared social governance, based on the work of enterprise information disclosure, consumer reminders, and consumer warnings. In 2016, SAIC chose Shanghai, Chongqing, Jiangxi as three sites to conduct pilot projects on consumer complaints disclosure for 1 year, obtaining remarkable results, and receiving the attention and approval of the general public. In order to further explore the consumer complaints disclosure sustem, guide businesses in strengthening self-regulation, improve the level of consumer satisfaction, boost society’s confidence in cosumers, improve mechanisms to promote consumption, enhance the role of consumption in stimulating economic growth, SAIC has decided to comprehensively conduct nation-wide pilot projects on consumer complaints disclosure. The following items are hereby notified:

I. Overall Considerations

(1) Guiding Ideology

Fully implement the spirit of the 19th Party Congress and Xi Jinping’s Thought on Socialism With Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, implement the provision of the “Market Supervision Plan During the 13th Five-Years Plan” to “establish a mechanism of consumer complaint, consumer rights protection and disclosure”, improve institutional mechanisms to promote consumption.

(2) Work Objectives

Through comprehensive pilot sites of consumer complaints disclosure, establish a connection between ex-post remedies and the preventive protection of consumer rights, strengthen enterprise credit supervision, promote the construction of a credit system, protect consumers’ right to information and the right to choose, strengthen the supervisory role of social organizations, the public opinion and the public. Encourange business operators to implement a subject responsibility system on consumer rights’ protection, improve business operators’ awareness of integrity and compliance, promote controlling consumer disputes at the source, further construct a shared social governance structure for consumer rights’ protection, and diligently create a safe environment where consumers feel reassured and comfortable.

(3) Basic Principles

Uphold planning as a whole, and advancing in a coordinated fashion. Make full use of existing informatization systems and platforms, strengthen enterprise credit management, the disclosure of consumer complaints, the intensification of the construction of such modules as reminder and warning modules for consumers; strengthen coordination, and work linkages, realize the coordinated progress of consumer complaints disclosure across industry sectors, levels, and ministries, as well as the sharing of information about complaints, and their use by multiple parties.

Uphold Guidance on Problems, and Give Prominence to Re-evaluation. Start by grasping areas and industry sectors where consumer complaints are concentrated, and forceful representations are made. Grasp major problems involving a wide range of issues and the vital interests of the masses, and gradually expand the coverage of consumer complaints disclosure. Promptly respond to the disclosure of complaints of social concern, and which are multi-dimentional, and improve the comprehensive effect of disclosure.

Uphold objectivity and fairness, and truthfulness. Under the premise of protecting state secrets, trade secrets, and personal privacy, information about complaints which will influence consumers’ choice shall be comprehensively, truthfully, objectively disclosed. Abide by the principle of reasonable administration, avoid disrupting the order of normal market competition, and always let the market mechanism play the decisive role in the allocation of resources.

Uphold opening-up and innovation, and shared social governance. Encourage early pilot projects, innovation in models of disclosure, expand the channels for disclosure, open-up resources for disclosure, and expand the application layer of information disclosure.

Establish channels of public participation, and through which enterprises can rectify information. Build up a shared social governance structure with the common participation of government, enterprises, the public, where each one complements the strengths of the other.

II. Work Content

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall, in accordance with the real situation, actively carry out pilot projects on the disclosure of consumer complaint information within their jurisdiction, establish and improve a disclosure system, regulate the disclosure procedure, explore methods of disclosure, define the scope of disclosure, expand the channels of disclosure, evaluate the effects of disclosure, strengthen propaganda and guidance, create a social atmosphere, and definitely bring to play the role of disclosure.

(1) Choose the Sites of Pilot Projects Scientifically

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall choose at minimum 1 city above the prefecture level to conduct the pilot work on consumer complaints disclosure. The choice of pilot sites shall take into considerations such factors as the activity level of local consumers, the degree of concentration of market subjects, the amount of consumer complaints, the foundation of consumer rights protection, the social credit system and the level of construction of “Internet + Government Services”, to ensure a good working foundation for pilot work on consumer complaints, and the support of big data. Areas where conditions are mature may choose to expand pilot sites at their own discretion, and continuously expand the coverage of pilot projects.

(2) Establish and Improve Systems for Pilot Projects

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall, in accordance with the real situation, and with the principles of truthfulness, timeliness in coverage, disclosure and transparency, procedural fairness, focus on the object, content, methods, media, procedures, corrections, remedies, internal management, social supervision, risk prevention of consumer complaints. They shall explore the establishment of a specialized work system, as well as making timely improvements and optimizations, and continuously improving the level of standardization and institutionalization of consumer complaints disclosure.

(3) Reasonably Determine the Content of Disclosure

All departments of industry and commerce and market supervision departments shall include the following information related to business operators within the scope of consumer complaints disclosure:

1. business operators’ registration information;

2. the amount of complaints received by departments and industry and commerce and market supervision departments;

3. the success rate of complaints’ mediation (included complaints solved after reconciliation).

All local areas may, on the above basis, explore ways to increase the contents to be disclosed (such as the details of complaints, the proportion on complaints about sales on the total of complaints, the hottest issued, signs of problems, potential risks, etc.)

(4) Explore the Expansion of Disclosure Channels

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall actively explore the expansion of disclosure channels based on considerations about expanding the impact of consumer complaints disclosure, ensuring authoritativeness, satisfying consumers’ need to obtain information conveniently, etc. Disclosure of complaint information may be concentrated on government websites, public administration new media, mainstream media platforms, but it may als be disseminated through the “12315 Wujin” website, units which create consumer confidence, and other such channels, besides bring combined with an extensive expansion of such channels of consumer education and guidance as street committees, community, residents’ and village committees.

III. Deadlines

(1) Preliminary Preparations (First quarter of 2018)

 

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments determine the pilot sites in light of local conditions, define implementation plans for local areas, and work systems, designate departments responsibile for pilot work, establish mechanisms to coordinate pilot work together with bureaus of industry and commerce and consumer protection bureaus, and do a good work of prepare for pilot projects.

(2) Implementing Pilot Projects (Second, Third Quarter of 2018)

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall organize and conduct pilot projects on disclosure of customer complaints according to implementation plans, and explore contents, methods, procedure of disclosure coherent with actual conditions within their jurisdiction or industry, and actively expand the influence of disclosure. New circumstances and new problems encountered during work shall promptly be reported to the Consumer Protection Bureau of SAIC, to guarantee the smooth progress of pilot projects.

(3) Evaluation and Summarization (Fourth Quarter of 2018)

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall summarize the status of pilot projects in the fourth quarter of 2018, and deliver work reports on pilot projects to the Consumer Protection Bureau of SAIC by 30 November 2018. The Consumer Protection Bureau of SAIC shall conduct special investigation in specific provinces (districts, municipalities) as the case may be.

IV. Work Requirements

(1) Strengthen organizational leadership.

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments shall attach great importance to actively seeking the support of local Party committees and local governments. Strengthen organizational leadership, clarify the persons responsible for pilot projects, and the contact persons within units, form a responsibilty system implemented at various levels. The quality of work must be guaranteed, an information review and release process must be established and improved, and strictly controlled, to avoid errors, omissions, duplicatios in information disclosure. Trials of consumer complaints’ disclosure are to be included in the evaluation of work, to guarantee the effectivenss of trial work.

(2) Integrate Work in the Overall Situation

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments must fully bring into play the role of consumer complaints disclosure pilot projects, and form an important starting point for market supervision in the new era, deepening integration with, proceeding at the same pace as, and reciprocally promoting such work as credit supervision, the construction of a credit system, evalution of consumer satisfaction index, consumer reassurance, “cases of complaints that are transferred”, consumer reminders and warnings, administrative guidance and interviews, and other work. Further improve the predictability, accuracy, effectiveness of regulatory enforcement.

(3) Create a Work Brand

Departments of industry and commerce in all provinces (districts, municipalies), market supervision departments must consider consumer complaints disclosure as a new measure to implement “Internet + government services”, establish mechanisms of shared social governance for consumer protection, new models of brands serving a healthy economic development, keep in step with Party committees and governments in developing focal points and major points important for the people’s livelihood, vigorously strive for industry and enterprises support, combine disclosure work with improving the consumption environment, with joint incentives and punishments, and with serving people’s livelihood, continuously expanding awareness and influence.

State Administration for Industry and Commerce

  21 December 2017

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