Industry experts warn of the danger of unaccredited services centers on the industry and the national economy

This comes as a result of their illegality, their non-dependence on specific commercial nor industrial entities, as well as their use of non-original spare parts which put the lives of the consumers at risk

  

Cairo, Egypt: Industry experts, members of the Federation of Industries, along with some representatives of international companies in Egypt called for the need of strongly confronting the prevalence of unaccredited services centers, warning of its dangerous impact on the Egyptian national economy, the industry at large, and the companies that operate in the field. This comes as a result of their illegality, their non-dependence on specific commercial nor industrial entities, as well as their use of non-original spare parts which put the lives of the consumers at risk.

This topic was raised during a panel discussion entitled: "Fake services centers and their impact on consumers and the economy", and organized by the Egyptian Businessmen Association in cooperation with the Consumer Protection Agency, with the support of the government in the hope of eliminating the informal economy, as well as protecting the citizens from frauds that spring up due to fake services centers. In fact, these centers are believed to negatively affect the national economy development process.

When it comes to the prestigious list of attendees that partook in this roundtable,  it comprises names such as; Dr. Ayman Hossam, Head of the Consumer Protection Agency, Major General Abdel Raouf El Ahmadi, Head of the Industrial Control Department, Engineer Mohamed El Mohandes, Head of the Chamber of Engineering Industries in the Federation of Egyptian Industries, Engineer Maissam El Hennawy, CEO of Electrolux Egypt, some media professionals, in addition to a group of industry, trade, and business experts in Egypt. Additionally, the roundtable was moderated by Hassan Mabrouk, Head of the Household Appliances Division at the Chamber of Engineering Industries in the Federation of Egyptian Industries.

Commenting on this matter, Dr. Ayman Hossam stated: “The Consumer Protection Agency, according to the law, is responsible for protecting consumers and everything that comes within the scope of consumption. The fake services centers are deemed as a negative phenomenon for the Egyptian economy, but at the same time, it is considered as an indicator of economic prosperity. The durable goods sector accounted for at least 32% of the complaints received by the agency concerning the fake services center, which indicates the vital need for an immediate move to eliminate this problem.” Dr. Hossam added: “Stemming from the aforementioned problem, we are currently looking forward to establishing a database that includes accredited service centers, which are about 740 centers. These centers are supposedly guaranteed by the private sector factories, the Industrial Control Authority, the Consumer Protection Agency, in cooperation with the companies that operate in the field, in order to ensure that those centers meet the agreed and mandated standards.” For his part, Engineer Maissam El Hennawy, CEO of Electrolux Egypt, expressed his thanks for conducting such important events to contribute to curbing this phenomenon in Egypt. Thus, he commented by mentioning: “This problem has been spanning for almost 20 years, and Electrolux is the most affected company in the Egyptian market. Meaning, many of the fake centers are taking advantage of our brand name, in the industrial field, to deceive the citizens, hence impeding our efforts in providing the best post-sales services to the Egyptian consumer."

“The unaccredited centers do not own neither the experience nor the demanded standards for safety and quality, regarding spare parts, which puts the consumer's life at risk. So, here comes the importance of the initiative in order to educate and guide the consumer who does not know that they are, indeed, dealing with those fake and untrusted services centers.” added Maissam.

To conclude his words, El Hennawy stressed that the company is fully prepared to cooperate with all regulatory and governmental authorities and other private sector partners to eliminate this phenomenon, including reporting the unaccredited centers, which are determined by the help of the consumers’ complaints. He also pointed out that his company will be cooperating with the Consumer Protection Agency, while conducting the initiative that entails accrediting the centers that meet the mandated specifications and standards.

It is worth mentioning that Eng. Maissam also welcomed Eng. Ayman Hosaam's proposal to establish a training academy with the aim of securing and providing trained cadres that are taught, well prepared, and coached according to the highest international standards. He has also put forward and highlighted the company's will to be a named one of the “soldiers” of the regulatory authorities.

On that occasion, Major General Abdel Raouf El Ahmadi said: “We informed the National Media Regulatory Agency to stop the misleading advertisements pertinent to those unaccredited services centers, as well as worked with other regulatory authorities to address this negative phenomenon, all of that was done in parallel with assisting the unaccredited centers to adjust their conditions and abide by the law to join the official system.” Moreover, Mohamed El Mohandes reiterated that the Egyptian products, in the field of durable goods, have made great progress and are welcome in many foreign markets, hammering on the importance of after-sales services as the most crucial pillar of the industry in general.

In conclusion, the participants highlighted the need to activate the laws and the cooperation between all the concerned parties, including governmental entities, civil society organizations, the media, and the private sector, represented by industrial companies, in order to address this catastrophic phenomenon that emerged due to the use of untrained labor and the supply of non-original spare parts. Participants also called for the launch of an intensive media campaign that confronts this deep-rooted problem.

-Ends-

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