Law of The People's Republic of China on Product Quality


Publish Date:2008-12-24

 

Adopted at the 30th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Seventh National People's Congress on February 22,1993


Chapter I

General Provisions9


Article 1


This law is enacted to strengthen the supervision and control over product quality,to define the liability relating thereto,to protect the legitimate rights and interests of users and consumers and to safeguard the socio-economic order.


Article 2


Activities of production and sale of any product conducted within the territory of the People's Republic of China must abide by this Law.

"Product"referred to in this Law means a product which is processed or manufactured for the purpose of sale.

This Law shall not apply to construction projects.


Article 3


Producers and sellers shall be liable for product quality in accordance with this Law.


Article 4


It is prohibited to forge or unlawfully use attested -quality marks,famous-and-excellent-product marks and other product quality marks;it is prohibited to forge the origin of a product,to forge or unlawfully use the name and address of a factory of another producer; and it is prohibited to mix impurities or imitations into products that are produced or to be sold,or pass a fake product off as a genuine one,or defective product off as a high-quality one.


Article 5 The State shall encourage the popularization of scientific methods in product quality control and the adoption of advanced science and technology.The State shall encourage enterprises to make their product quality come up to and even surpass their respective trade standards,the national and international standards. Units and individuals that have made outstanding achievements in ensuring advanced product quality control and in raising product quality to the advanced international standards shall be awarded.


Article 6


The department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the State Council shall be responsible for supervision and control over product quality throughout the country. The relevant departments under the State Council shall be responsible for supervision and control over product quality within the scope of their respective functions and responsibilities.

The administrative departments responsible for supervision over product quality in the local people's governments at or above the county level shall be in charge of supervision and control over product quality within their administrative regions.The relevant departments in the local people's governments at or above the county level shall be in charge of supervision and control over product quality within their respective functions and responsibilities.


Chapter II

Supervision and Control over Product Quality

Article 7


The quality of a product shall be inspected and proved up to the standards.No sub-standard product shall be passed off as a product up to the standards.


Article 8


Industrial products constituting possible threats to the health or the safety of human life and property must be in compliance with the national standards and trade standards laid down with a view to safeguarding the health or the safety of human life and property;In the absence of such national standards or trade standards,the product must meet the requirements for safeguarding the health or the safety of human life and property.


Article 9


The State shall practise an attestation system of enterprise quality scheme according to the international quality control sandards in general use.An enterprise may on voluntary basis apply to the department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the state council or an attestation agency approved by a department authorized by the department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the State Council for enterprise quality scheme attestation.The attestation agency shall issue a certificate of enterprise quality scheme attestation to the enterprise which has passed the attestation.

The State shall practise a product quality attestation system by taking reference to the international advanced product standards and technical requirements.An enterprise may on voluntary basis apply to the department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the State Council or to an attestation agency approved by a department authorized by the department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the State Council for product quality attestation. The attestation agency shall issue a product quality attestation certificate to the enterprise which has passed the attestation and permit it to use product quality attestation marks on its products or the packages thereof.


Article 10


The State shall,with respect to product quality, enforce a supervision and inspection system with random checking as its main form.Products constituting threats to the health or the safety of human life and property, important industrial products which have a bearing on the national economy and the people's livelihood,and products with quality problems as reported by users, consumers or relevant organizations shall be subjected to random checking.The supervision and random checking shall be planned and organized by the department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the State Council.The administrative departments responsible for supervision over product quality of the local people's governments at or above the county level may also organize supervision and random checking within their respective administrative regions.However,overlapping random checking shall be avoided.The results of random checking of product quality shall be made public.Where the law provides otherwise with resp

ect to the supervision over and inspection of product quality,the provisions of such law shall apply.

Products may be inspected if the supervision and random checking of such products so require,but no checking fees shall be charged from the enterprises concerned.Expenses incurred for the supervision and random checking shall be placed on the budget in accordance with the relevant regulations of the State Council.


Article 11


Product testing and inspection institutions must have appropriate testing facilities and capabilities,and shall undertake the work of testing and inspection of product quality only after being appraised and endorsed by a department in charge of supervision and control over product quality under the people's government at or above the provincial level or an organization authorized by the department. Where the laws,administrative rules and regulations provide otherwise with respectto the institutions for testing and inspection of product quality,the provisions of such laws,rules and regulations shall apply.


Article 12


Users and consumers shall have the right to make inquiries to the producers and sellers about the quality of their products.Where a complaint is made to a depart- ment in charge of supervision and control over product quality or to an administrative department for industry and commerce or to any other department concerned,such department shall be responsible for handling the case.


Article 13


Social organizations responsible for the protection of the rights and interests of consumers may,with respect to matters concerning product quality as reported by consumers,suggest to the departments concerned that they handle the matters,and may give support to consumers in bringing a suit to a people's court with respect to the damage caused by quality problems of products.


Chapter III

Liability and Obligation of Producers and Sellers

Concerning Product Quality

Section 1

Liability and Obligation of Producers

Concerning Product Quality

Article 14


Producers shall be liable for the quality of the products they produce.

The products shall meet the following quality requirements: (1)being free from unreasonable dangers threatening the safety of human life and property, and conforming to the national standards or the trade standards laid down with a view to safeguarding the health or the safety of human life and property where there are such standards; (2)possessing the properties and functions that they ought to possess,except for those with directions stating their functional defects; (3)conforming to the product standards marked on the products or on the packages thereof,and to the quality conditions indicated by way of product directions, samples,etc.


Article 15


All marks on the products or on the packages thereof shall meet the following requirements: (1)with certificate showing that the product has passed quality inspection; (2)with name of the product,name and address of the factory that produced the product,all marked in Chinese; (3)with corresponding indications regarding the specifications and grade of the product,and the main ingredients and their quantities contained in the product, where such particulars are to be indicated according to the special nature and instructions for use of the product; (4)with production date,safe-use period or date of invalidity if the product is to be used within a time limit; (5)with warning marks or statements in Chinese for products which,if improperly used,may cause damage to themselves,or may endanger the safety of human life or property. Food products without package and other non-packed products which are difficult to be marked because of their special nature may dispense with product marks.


Article 16


The packages of poisonous products,dangerous products, fragile products,products that should be kept upright during storage and transportation and other products with special requirements must meet the corresponding requirements and carry warning marks or statements in Chinese indicating directions for storage and transportation.


Article 17


No producer may produce any product that has been officially eliminated by the State.


Article 18


No producer may forge the origin of a product,nor forge or unlawfully use another producer's name and address.


Article 19


No producer may forge or unlawfully use another producer's attested marks,famous-and-excellent-product marks or other product quality marks.


Article 20


In producing products,producers may not mix impurities or imitations into the products,nor substitute a fake product for a genuine one,a defective product for a highquality one,nor pass a substandard product off as a good-quality one.


Section 2

Liability and Obligation of Sellers

Concerning Product Quality

Article 21


A seller shall practise a check-for-acceptance system while replenishing his stock,and examine the qualitycertificates and other marks.


Article 22


A seller shall adopt measures to keep the products for sale in good quality.


Article 23


A seller may not sell invailid or deteriorated pro- ducts.


Article 24


The marks of a seller's products shall conform to the provisions of Article 15 of this law.


Article 25


A seller may not forge the origin of a product,nor forge or unlawfull use another producer's name and address.


Article 26


A seller may not forge or unlawfully use another producer's attested marks,famous-and-excellent-product marks orother product quality marks.


ARTICLE 27


In selling products,sellers may not mix impurities or imitations into the products,nor substitute a fake product for a genuine one,a defective product for a high-quality one,nor pass a substandard product off as a good-quality one.


Chapter IV

Compensation for Damage

Article 28


A seller shall be responsible for repair or change of the product,or for refund of the purchase price if the product he sold is under any of the following circumstances,and,the seller shall compensate for the loss of the users or consumers if a loss has been caused thereby:

(1)not having the functions it ought to have,and no prior explanation thereabout being given by the seller;

(2)not conforming to the product standards marked on the product or its package;

(3)not conforming to the quality conditions indicated by way of product directions or sample.

After the repair,change,refund or compensation has been made according to the provisions of the preceding paragraph, if the liability is attributed to the producer or to another seller who had supplied the product(hereinafter referred to as supplier),the seller shall have the right to recover his losses from the producer or the supplier.

Where a seller fails to make the repair,change,refund or compensation in accordance with the provisions in the first paragraph,the department in charge of supervision over product quality or the administrative department for industry and commerce shall order the seller to make rectification.

Where the sale contract or processing contract concluded between a producer and another,a seller and another or between a producer and a seller provides otherwise, the parties concerned shall act in accordance with the provisions of the contract.


Article 29


A producer shall be liable for compensation if his defective product causes damage to human life or property other than the defective product itself(hereinafter referred to as another person's property).

A producer shall not be liable for compensation if he can prove the existence of any of the following circumstances:

(1)The product has not been put in circulation;

(2)The defect causing the damage did not exist at the time when the product was put in circulation;

(3)The science and technology at the time the product was put in circulation was at a level incapable of detecting the defect.


Article 30


Where damage to human life or another person's property is due to a product's defect caused by the fault of a seller,the seller shall be liable for compensation.

Where the seller can identify neither the producer of the defective product nor the supplier thereof,the seller shall be liable for compensation.


Article 31


Where a defective product causes damage to human life or another person's property,the victim may claim compensation from the producer and may also claim compensation from the seller of such product. Where the liability falls on the producer,but the seller has made the compensation,the seller shall have the right to recover the loss from the producer.Where the liability falls on the seller,but the producer has made the compensation,the producer shall have the right to recover the loss from the seller.


Article 32


Where bodily injury is caused by a product due to its defect,the infringer shall compensate for the medical expenses of the infringed,the decreased earnings due to the loss of his working time as well as the subsistence allowance if the infringed is disabled;where such defect causes the death of the infringed,the infringer shall also pay the funeral expenses,the pension for the family of the deceased and the living expenses necessary for any other person(s) supported by the deceased before his death.

Where damage to the property of the infringed is caused due to the defect of a product,the infringer shall restore the damaged property to its original state, or pay compensation at the market price,and the infringer shall also compensate for other serious losses of the infringed suffering therefrom.


Article 33


The limitation period for bringing an action claiming for compensation with respect to the damage resulting from the defect of a product is two years,counting from the day on which the party concerned knows of or should know of the infringement of his rights and interests.

The right to claim for compensation with respect to the damage resulting from the defective product shall be forfeited upon the expiry of a period of ten years from the day on which the defective product causing the damage is delivered to the first user or consumer,except where the clearly stated period for safeuse has not expired.


Article 34


"Defect"referred to in this Law means the unreasonable danger existing in a product which endangers the safety of human life or another person's property; where there are national or trade standards laid down with a view to safeguarding the health of people and the safety of human life and property,"defect"means any inconformity to such standards.


Article 35


Where a civil dispute concerning product quality arises,the parties concerned may seek a settlement through negotiation or mediation.Should the parties be unwilling to resort to negotiation and mediation, or the negotiation and mediation be unsuccessful,they may apply to an arbitration organization for arbitration as agreed upon between the parties;where the parties fail to reach any such arbitration as agreed upon between the parties;where the parties fail to reach any such arbitration agreement,the case may be brought before a people's court.


Article 36


The arbitration organization or the people's court may entrust an organization in charge of product quality inspection,as specified in Article 11 of this Law, with the conduct of a product quality inspection.


Chapter V

Penalty Provisions

Article 37


Where products produced do not comply with the relevant national or trade standards laid down with a view to safeguarding the health and safety of human life and property,the producer shall be ordered to stop the production,the products and earnings illegally produced and made shall be confiscated.And,a fine from twice to five times the value of the unlawful earnings shall be imposed concurrently,and the business licence may be revoked;if the act constitutes a crime, criminal responsibility shall be investigated according to law.

Where products sold do not comply with the relevant national or trade standards laid down with a view to safeguarding the health and safety of human life and property,the seller shall be ordered to stop the sale.If a seller who,clearly knowing the products which do not comply with the relevant national or trade standards laid down with a view to safeguarding the health and safety of human life and property,intentionally sells,the products for illegal sale and the unlawful earnings thus made shall be confiscated.And,a fine from twice to five times the unlawful earnings shall be imposed concurrently,and the business licence may be revoked;if the act constitutes a crime,criminal responsibility shall be investigated according to law.


Article 38


Where a producer or a seller mixes impurities or imitations into a product,or passes a fake product off as a genuine one,or passes a defective product off as a high-quality one,or passes a substandard product off as a good-quality one,the producer or seller shall be ordered to stop production or sale,the unlawful earnings shall be confiscated.And,a fine from twice to five times his unlawful earnings shall be imposed concurrently, and the business licence may be revoked;if the act constitutes a crime, criminal responsibility shall be investigated according to law.


Article 39


Where a product which has been officially eliminated by the State is produced,the producer shall be ordered to stop the production,the products and earnings illegally produced and made shall be confiscated. And ,a fine from twice to five times the unlawful earnings shall be imposed concurrently,and the business licence may be revoked.


Article 40


Where invalid or deteriorated products are sold,the seller shall be ordered to stop the sale,the products for illegal sale and the unlawful earnings shall be confiscated.And,a fine from twice to five times the unlawful earnings shall be imposed concurrently,and the business licence may be revoked;if the act constitutes a crime,criminal responsibility shall be investigated according to law.


Article 41


Where a producer or a seller forges the origin of a product or unlawfully uses another producer's name and address,or forges or unlawfully uses attested marks,famous-and-excellent-product marks or other product quality marks,the producer or seller shall be ordered to make public rectification,and the unlawful earnings shall be confiscated;a fine may be imposed concurrently.


Article 42


Where anyone sells or purchases products mentioned in Articles 37 to 40 of this Law by offering or accepting bribes or other unlawful means and if the act constitutes a crime,criminal responsibility shall be investigated according to law.


Article 43


Where the marks of a product do not comply with the provisions of Article 15 of this Law,the producer or seller concerned shall be ordered to make rectification;where the marks of the packed products do not comply with the provisions of item(4)and(5)of Article 15 of this Law and if the case is serious, the producer or seller concerned may be ordered to stop production or sale.And,a fine from 15% to 20% of the unlawful earnings may be imposed concurrently.


Article 44


Whoever forges inspection data or inspection conclusion of a product shall be ordered to make rectification, and a fine from twice to three times the inspection fee may be imposed.If the circumstance is serious, the business licence shall be revoked;where the act constitutes a crime,the person held directly esponsible shall be investigated for criminal responsibility by applying mutatis mutandis the provisions of Article 167 of the Criminal Law.


Article 45


An administrative sanction in form of revocation of business licence as provided for in this Law shall be decided by the administrative department for industry and commerce,while other administrative sanctions shall be decided by the department responsible for supervision over product quality or the administrative department for industry and commerce according to the functions and powers prescribed by the State Council.Where the laws or administrative regulations provide otherwise as to the authorities exercising the power of dministrative sanctions,the relevent provisions of such laws and administrative regulations shall apply.


Article 46


If a party is not satisfied with the decision on administrative sanction,it may,within 15 days of the receipt of the sanction notice,apply for reconsideration to the authorities at the next higher level to the authorities that have made the decision on sanction;the party may also bring a suit in a people's court directly within 15 days of the receipt of the sanction notice.

The authorities responsible for reconsideration shall make a reconsideration decision within 60 days of the receipt of the application for reconsideration. If a party concerned is not satisfied with the reconsideration decision,it may bring a suit in a people's court within 15 days of the receipt of such decision.If no decision has been made by the authorities responsible for reconsideration upon the expiry of the time limit,the party concerned may bring an action in a people's court within 15 days of the expiry of the time limit for reconsideration.

If the party concerned do not apply for reconsideration, nor bring a suit in a people's court upon the expiry of the time limit,nor carry out the decision on sanction, the authorities that have made the decision on sanction may apply to the people's court for compulsory enforcement.


Article 47


Any State functionary engaged in the work of supervision and control over product quality,who abuses power,neglects duty,engages in malpractice for private benifit,shall be investigated for criminal responsibility if his act constitutes a crime;if his act does not constitute a crime,he shall be subjected to administrative sanction.


Article 48


Any State functionary who clearly knows that an enter- prise,institution or individual has committed criminal actions in violation of this Law,and takes advantage of his position to protect the offenders intentionally from prosecution,shall be investigated for criminal responsibility according to law.


Article 49


Whoever obstructs,by means of violence or intimi- dation,State functionaries engaged in the work of supervision and control over product quality from carrying out their duties according to law shall be investigated for criminal resposibility in accordance with the provisions of Article 157 of the Criminal Law;whoever refuses or impedes,without resorting to violence or intimidation,State functionaries engaged in the work of supervision and control over product quality to carry out their duties shall be punished by the public security organs in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Regulations on Administrative Penalties for Public Security.


Chapter VI

Supplementary Provisions

Article 50


Measures for supervision and control over quality of military industrial products shall be formulated separately by the State Council and the Central Military commission.


Article 51


This Law shall come into force as of September 1,1993.


Appendix The articles 167 and 157 of the Criminal Law of the People's Republic of China. Article 167


Whoever forges,alters,steals,forcibly seizes or destroys the official documents,certificates or seals of stateorgans,enterprises,institutions or people's organizations shall be sentenced to fixedterm imprisonment of not more than three years,criminal detention,public surveillance or deprivation of political rights;if the circumstances are serious, he shall be sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of not less than three years and not more than ten years.


Article 157


Whoever by means of force or threat obstructs a state functionary from carrying out his functions according to law or refuses to carry out legally effective judgements or orders of people's courts shall be sentenced to fixedterm imprisonment of not more than three years,criminal detention,a fine or deprivation of political rights.