The NBTC and the FDA yesterday agreed to introduce a “fast-track regulatory enforcement” in stopping advertisements of substandard or fake supplementary food and cosmetic products from being broadcast on television, radio and social media, NBTC Secretary-General Takorn Tantasith said.
The move comes as authorities are making a concerted effort to regulate cosmetics and supplementary foods in the market as well as make sure that sales tactics using celebrity “reviewers” adhere to strict standards.
Mr Takorn said that from today (May 4) six officers from the FDA will be sent to the NBTC’s head office to monitor advertisements of supplementary foods and cosmetics that are not approved by the FDA and take them off air.
Mr Takorn said the latest measure will speed up the process of removing illegal or inappropriate advertising from the broadcasting networks and social media within one day of any foul play being detected.
The NBTC secretary-general can now order immediate temporary suspension of broadcasts of such advertisements pending a final decision by an NBTC consumer protection subcommittee and the official media regulator.
Those found broadcasting advertisements deemed as deceptive will face a fine of up to B5 million. If they continue to defy the law, they will be fined B100,000 per day, he said.
The existing process for removing the content when illegal or exaggerated advertisements are found calls for the matters to be brought before the NBTC consumer protection subcommittee for consideration, he said.
The subcommittee then asks the FDA to verify the content of those advertisements, he said.
After checking, the FDA sends back its observations to the NBTC which then considers removing those illegal advertisements with the entire process taking between 45 to 60 days, Mr Takorn said.
Tares Krassanairawiwong, deputy permanent secretary for the Public Health Ministry said the cooperation between the FDA and the NBTC will boost efficiency in screening advertisements and protect consumers better, curbing their risk of exposure to sales tactics of substandard and fake products.
FDA Secretary-General Wanchai Sattayawutthipong said the new process will expedite law enforcement.
Meanwhile, Tourist Police Chief Maj Gen Surachet Hakpan said that 90% of the products seized during a sweep of more 200 shops in Talat Mai Don Muang in Bangkok on Tuesday (May 2) were illegal. The move came after Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-o-cha instructed authorities to step up law enforcement against vendors of substandard products.
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