Government Mandates Inclusion of Manufacturing and Expiry Dates on Cement Bags
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The Ministry of Science and Technology has opted to forward the Competition Commission of Pakistan’s (CCP) suggestion regarding the revision of national cement standards, focusing on the inclusion of manufacturing and expiry dates on cement bags, to the PSQCA for review within the Technical Committee.

Led by Member OFT Saeed Ahmad Nawaz, a CCP delegation conducted a follow-up session with Ali Tahir, Additional Secretary (In-charge) of the Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST), to explore the proposal for altering the National Cement Standards, mandating the inclusion of ‘manufacturing/packaging and expiry/best before’ dates on cement bags.

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The proposal was formally transmitted through a Policy Note dated 7th March 2024 to both MoST and the Pakistan Standards and Quality Control Authority (PSQCA).

CCP Member emphasized the critical nature of these disclosures due to cement’s hygroscopic properties, pointing out that the absence of such disclosures would contravene Section 10 of the Competition Act, 2010. He underscored the prevailing practice where manufacturers reveal manufacturing/packaging and expiry/best-before dates individually on bags and collectively on bales for export purposes, yet overlook them for local products. He emphasized the necessity for a collaborative control mechanism encompassing all stakeholders.

The Ministry assured full cooperation to CCP in safeguarding consumer interests, as outlined in Section 10 of the Competition Act, 2010. It was agreed during the meeting that the issue would be referred to PSQCA for discussion within the Technical Committee meeting slated for 7th May 2024.

The attendees of the meeting also concurred with CCP Member’s suggestion to arrange a session with stakeholders, including the cement manufacturers association, to address the matter and notify them about potential enforcement measures. The meeting witnessed the participation of senior officials from CCP, MoST, and PSQCA.

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