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June 17, 2014

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Probe finds money can get quality certificates

COMPANIES are gaining quality certificates they don’t qualify for by simply paying money, according to a Xinhua news agency investigation.

It said a Beijing-based machinery company achieved an international ISO9001 standard for its quality management system by paying an agency, Beijing Oriental Show Letter Certification Consulting Co Ltd, 6,500 yuan (US$1,045).

The consulting company helped the firm get the certificate in a month when the process should have taken nine months, according to Xinhua.

It sent a trainer surnamed Xiong to teach two machinery company workers. But in two classes, Xiong talked about quality control in garment processing. The trainees questioned the relevance, but Xiong said the knowledge was inter-linked, Xinhua said.

Xiong wasn’t concerned about whether they understood the points and just told them to memorize the material in order to pass the exams. As an extra tip, the manager of the consulting company, surnamed Wang, said: “Your company doesn’t have enough workers. If the checkers ask, you just need to say that many of your workers have gone back home as Spring Festival is near.”

Officials from the Beijing Hengbiao Quality Certification Co Ltd visited the firm in January. Following Wang’s suggestion, the machinery company manager offered cash in red envelopes, Xinhua reported.

A month later, the company received its certificate.

In China’s toy manufacturing base in south China’s Shantou City, the China Quality Certification Center and Beijing-based Certification Center of Light Industry Council are in charge of granting certificates.

However, a toy plant manager told Xinhua that, in most cases, the Beijing company sent two checkers who would be paid 1,000 to 1,200 yuan. If anyone refused to pay, the checkers would pick on them, he said.

The Shantou Qianwei Technical Services Co Ltd helped many plants to get certificates, Xinhua said. Its manager, surnamed Lin, said they usually charged 4,000 to 6,000 yuan per product. If checkers came, the plant needed to pay an additional 15,000 yuan to the company and 2,400 yuan to checkers.


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