Zero tolerance for fraudulent malls among changes

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Zero tolerance for fraudulent malls among changes

The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) said yesterday it will order an immediate shutdown of online shopping malls that are found to have deceived consumers.

It convened a meeting of ministry heads and representatives from consumer rights organizations yesterday and announced next year’s master plan for consumer policies.

“The plan is to build a market place where consumers come first,” said Kwak Se-boong, managing director of the FTC’s consumer policy bureau. “We plan to implement a safe trading environment by providing information and quickly helping consumers who are wronged.”

“When examples of unfair trading are obvious, and there is a chance that consumers will be unable to recover their losses, the FTC will put a temporary ban on sales or completely shut down the offending Web sites,” the FTC said in a release.

Restaurants that cook goat meat, pollack, mackerel, hairtail and pork for delivery will be required to mark where the foodstuff was sourced from next year. Currently, restaurants must indicate the origin of 12 items including beef, pork, chicken, rice, kimchi and octopus. To make the labeling more conspicuous, the point of origin should be printed in the same size font as the name of the product on the cover.

The government also plans to protect young people from unhealthy eating habits. It aims to have 14 more school lunch management centers, up from 22 now. They develop lunch menus, check the nutritional balance of menus and instruct children on hygiene.

The government will also revise the law so that smaller childcare facilities with less than 50 children will come under the regulatory radar of the centers.

To raise awareness of the side effects of medicines, it will set up two more regional centers to report cases to the Korea Institute of Drug Safety and Risk Management. It will also publicize names of lenders who are frequently reported for illegal financing scams, it added.

By Lee Sun-min []

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