Don’t sensationalize mask quality dispute

As one of the first countries to get the COVID-19 outbreak under control, China has become one of the main suppliers of medical supplies urgently needed to combat the global pandemic. However, more than one European country recently claimed that Chinese products failed to meet quality standards. The Dutch government Saturday ordered a recall of hundreds of thousands of masks imported from China and had distributed to hospitals, saying they were not up to standards. Some Western media outlets apparently made sensational reporting, tending to politicize the issue. Views expressed on the Chinese internet held that China is doing a hard but thankless job to assist Western countries in containing the epidemic and if it ends up with lawsuits about product quality, it’s better we stop what we are doing. We believe in the face of quality disputes, calmness is required and both sides shouldn’t exaggerate the issues. Politicizing this kind of dispute could jeopardize cooperation in the virus fight and should be avoided in any case. It’s self-evident that quality problems with medical products would cause more concern than products in other fields. Theoretically, there is a possibility that some of China’s aid and exported medical goods don’t meet standards. Foreign orders are large and urgent, but not all Chinese manufacturers specialize in this industry. Some have been temporarily converted to production. Coupled with the fact that standards in different countries are inconsistent and it’s hard to coordinate at such a critical juncture, the issue has become particularly complicated. China must strictly demand medical suppliers ensure quality and quantity and that no enterprise be allowed to put profits above social responsibility and morality. When other countries question product quality, we should, first of all, make relevant investigations. Enterprises involved must be severely punished, or prosecuted, should quality defects really exist. We will never cover up for them or give them opportunities to evade responsibilities. Ensuring the quality of medical supplies, be they foreign assistance or commercial exports, under the current circumstances concerns people’s life and also is of great importance to the reputation of “Made in China” and even China as a whole. Anyone who tarnishes that reputation will not be tolerated. Therefore, it’s suggested the country strengthen management of medical supply exports, enterprises be urged to take orders, produce and export in a more responsible manner so that defective products are destroyed within China and all materials shipped to the frontline of the coronavirus fight have superb quality. Disqualified medical products should not be allowed to be sold regardless of whether they are for domestic or foreign markets. Governments and media of other countries should maintain a rational attitude when they assume a quality problem in China-imported medical products. They shouldn’t exaggerate the issue or hype the “Made in China” label on purpose to stimulate public opinion. It’s immoral to do that. –GT