Saudi cancer cases 4 times world rate

Jan 12, 2011 12:00 AM

The rate of cancer cases in Saudi Arabia is four times as much as international levels due to contaminated imported goods, according to the chairman of the Saudi Consumer Protection Society (SCPS) on Tuesday.
"Cancer cases are on the rise and 35 % of the population have liver diseases because companies and individuals importing foodstuffs do not reveal the possible harm their products may cause," Dr. Nasser Al-Tuwaim said.

He warned that some products imported from China could contain cancerous materials.
"The Chinese commercial attaché told me that the Saudi traders ask only for cheap prices and are not concerned about the quality or safety of the goods they import from China," he said.
Al-Tuwaim said the society would launch a campaign against commercial fraud, including a boycott of goods that are fake or sold at exaggerated profits. "During the campaign, fraudulent companies and individual traders will be named and shamed," he added.
Al-Tuwaim also said the society would launch a special website for this purpose and will open the door for volunteers to work for it under its motto: "We are all eyes and watchmen." He said through the website, the society would issue monthly statements about the results of its investigations and asked consumers to contact the society via its toll free hotline.

"The society has started taking steps to uncover traders who fix prices and tamper with products by publishing information on our website," he said. Al-Tuwaim accused some Saudi merchants of causing deaths and serious diseases by importing shoddy car parts or goods that do not fulfil health regulations. "We have information that such cheating has extended to include imports of Australian sheep and car spare parts, which are replaced by some dealers who fit counterfeit parts and sell the original ones," he said. Al-Tuwaim said the society has established a data and studies center to document its findings and said they have teams cooperating with them to supply them with details of clandestine commercial transactions and prices.

According to him, more than 3,000 people have died and more than 10,000 others injured after being sold fake tires and other counterfeit car parts. He said the society would conduct inspection visits and convey their findings to the government in order to apply sanctions against traders who cheat consumers.
Al-Tuwaim said the centre has started to collate the prices of Australian sheep and found out that they were sold in Saudi Arabia at very high prices.
"The price per head of Australian sheep is between $ 40 to $ 50 in Malaysia and Indonesia and about $ 70 in some neighbouring Arab Gulf countries, while it is $ 200 in the Kingdom," he said.

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