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Consumer Product Safety Meeting in China Proves Unfruitful

A meeting the head of the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, Inez Tenenbaum, had with her Chinese counterpart proved unfruitful in holding Chinese companies accountable for defective drywall the companies produced. Inez Tenenbaum recently met with the Chinese government's Administration of Quality, Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine to discuss consumer product safety and product liability issues. The meeting between the two countries' respective safety commission concluded Wednesday.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said the federal agency petitioned the Chinese companies involved in making the defective drywall that has plagued thousands of homes across the United States to discuss the issue at the meeting. The spokesperson for the agency said that the federal government wants the Chinese companies that manufactured the defective drywall to be responsible to consumers in the United States and "do what is fair and just." No Chinese drywall manufacturers participated in the meeting.

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission there have been nearly 4,000 reports of defective drywall in the United States. Much of the defective Chinese drywall has been used in the South to reconstruct homes damaged by hurricanes and during the housing boom. The defective Chinese drywall is thought to create hydrogen sulfide which has the ability to corrode wiring and other metal installed in people's homes. The state of Louisiana has the second highest number of defective Chinese drywall cases in the country after Florida. Homes in Alabama have also been hit with the defective drywall. Louisiana has 704 homes that have been affected by the product liability issue.

Source: Housingwire.com, "Consumer Safety Head Leaves China without Drywall Resolution," Christine Ricciardi, 1/12/11

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