Starbucks, Tesla found to be infringing Chinese consumer rights
Consumers in China have been having their rights infringed by multinational companies who have been violating Chinese laws and jeopardizing consumers.
Starbucks and Tesla have come in the crosshair of the China Consumers Association (CCA's) annual report issued Friday on the protection of consumer rights and interests in 2021, which revealed that consumer rights infringement problems were still frequent in certain fields.
Constant vigilance, the CCA said, is needed to counter food safety risks amid a spike in crimes against food safety, with many food safety incidents involving famous brands, including Starbucks. The US corporation was found to have secretly altered ingredient labels and used expired ingredients.
Japanese chain restaurant Yoshinoya was found to be infringing the rights of consumers, too, facing reports for using poor quality minced meat.
Starbucks faced in February a fine of around 1.36 million yuan ($210,000) by the local market regulator in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province, after two outlets there were found to have adjusted ingredient shelf life and used expired ingredients, a flagrant violation of the Food Safety Law.
Businesses in the field of alternative energy vehicles, such as electric cars, have been found to be involved in rights infringement issues, with reports emerging over safety problems in said cars, such as sudden acceleration and flameout during driving, the CCA revealed.
There have been numerous disputes relating to new-energy smart vehicles purchases, which posed challenges relating to the protection of the rights of consumers. These disputes mainly involved power failure during driving, endurance mileage shrinkage, and battery charging failure.
Consumers protesting at auto shows at the frequency they do in the country indicate that they still have difficulties in right protection in the field of automobile consumption, especially in the field of intelligent vehicles.
The annual report did not only touch on rights infringement problems in food and new-energy vehicles, revealing that several online platforms and mobile apps were guilty of excessively collecting and utilizing consumers' personal information, not to mention serious refunding difficulties in prepaid products and service sectors, which have been exposing children and the elderly to various and complex forms of infringement.