Zara breaks silence over claims

Updated: 2011-04-27 08:02

By Wang Wei (China Daily)

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Zara on Monday dismissed concerns over the quality of its products sold in Beijing, insisting they pose no risk to shoppers.

The Spanish clothing giant's statement is the first since the Beijing Consumers Association claimed that its garments had failed standard checks for the third consecutive year.

In a press release quoted by Beijing News, parent company Inditex Group said Zara's clothes are of the "highest quality", adding that they have consistently passed chemical tests and meet the Chinese government's health and safety standards.

A spokesman for the brand was unavailable to comment when METRO called its headquarters in Shanghai.

In April, the Beijing Consumers Association said it commissioned the National Garments Quality Inspection and Supervision Center to test Zara trousers - commonly known as sweat pants - and found they contained 10 percent less wool than stated on the label. The color also easily faded.

It was the third time the association has targeted the brand. Tests in previous years found that its winter jackets contained far less down feathers than labeled, including one priced at 999 yuan.

Monday's release from Inditex explained that the content on labels does not match the test results because the definition of some fabric contents differ between Chinese and foreign standards, adding that its quality supervision office will rectify this issue in the near future.

"Zara sincerely respects Chinese consumers' rights," said public relations director Xu Xueqing in an interview with Beijing Times. "I've sent the three quality reports from the Beijing Consumers Association to our headquarters in Spain and we will give a responsible answer later."

However, Luo Gang, the association's director of consumption guidance, said he is not impressed with the response.

"Zara didn't give any detailed information or say whether they will refund (customers). Nor did they apologize," he said.

In an earlier interview with China Daily, the association's vice-president Dong Qing said: "What upsets us most is not that Zara's products have been continuously failing tests, it is their silence about the quality issue found in China. I don't think they carry such an arrogant attitude elsewhere. Their attitude really doesn't match their international image."


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