China has confiscated over 89 million poor quality masks, a government official said Sunday, as Beijing faces increasing complaints from customers angry about faulty protective gear being rushed into global supply chains.
Demand for protective equipment has soared as nations battle the deadly coronavirus, which has infected nearly three million people and killed 203,675, according to latest figures.
But an increasing number of countries have complained about faulty masks and other products exported by China, mostly for use by medical workers and vulnerable groups.
As of Friday, China’s market regulators have inspected nearly 16 million businesses and seized over 89 million masks and 418,000 pieces of protective gear, claimed Gan Lin, deputy director of the State Administration of Market Regulation, at a press conference.
Regulators had also seized ineffective disinfectants worth over $1.1 million, she alleged, although it is unclear how much of the confiscated goods were destined for markets abroad.
No evidence was presented to back the claim that 16 million individual businesses had been inspected by Chinese officials.
What is clear is that the list of countries complaining about the low status of Chinese medical manufacturing grows day by day. So too the warnings about trading with the single party state:White House
One month ago Breitbart News reported the Dutch government recalled 600,000 medical masks imported from China as they were revealed to have defective filters.
The Netherlands ordered 1.3 million masks from the Communist nation to protect medical staff and patients from the deadly virus. The masks, which arrived on March 21st, were soon discovered to have faulty membranes, thus rendering them useless in preventing the spread of coronavirus.
“They do not fit well on the face or have membranes that do not function properly, the very fine filters that have to stop virus particles,” a spokesman for the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) told De Telegraaf.
Spain, which only trails Italy in the number of recorded coronavirus deaths in Europe, received thousands of E.U. certified coronavirus tests that were revealed to be faulty last month.
The tests were shown to have just a 30 per cent accuracy rate in identifying COVID-19 in patients.
Spain’s EU-Certified Coronavirus Tests from China Don’t Work https://t.co/T0vPtaxGFZ
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) March 27, 2020
The Spanish government has so far sent the Communist nation $471.4 million in exchange for medical equipment to fight the epidemic.
In the Czech Republic, as much as 80 per cent of the 300,000 rapid test kits imported from China have been found to be defective. The test kits, which are reported to have cost the Czech government €1.83 million, show false-positive and false-negative results when testing patients, according to Prague Morning.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been accused of trying to profiteer from the coronavirus crisis that was caused by its own malevolent actions, including online censorship and the arrest of doctors in Wuhan who tried to warn of the coming pandemic.
On Friday, the Canadian government anounced it too had joined the long list of countries that have felt betrayed by China’s manufacturing ineptitude.
Ottawa said one million KN95 masks imported from China did not meet its strict standards and so could not be distributed to frontline health workers amid the coronavirus pandemic, as Breitbart News reported.
The Public Health Agency of Canada “has identified approximately one million KN95 masks as non-compliant with specifications for healthcare settings,” a spokesman told AFP.
“These items were not distributed to provinces and territories for frontline health care response, and are being subsequently assessed for use in non-healthcare settings,” he said.
According to official figures, China’s daily mask production has passed 116 million units, although more voices are being raised warning against the West’s increasing reliance on China’s supply chain.
Farage: Coronavirus Exposes Western Supply Chain’s Dependence on China https://t.co/xS4FRx6CpE
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) March 20, 2020
In the first two months of the year, a staggering 8,950 new manufacturers started producing masks in China, according to business data platform Tianyancha.
Despite the nationwide crackdown, businesses were continuing with illicit production of medical equipment since it was a way to earn “quick money” Jin Hai, a Chinese customs official said earlier this month.
Over 31.6 million faulty masks and 509,000 protective suits destined for export had been confiscated by port officials as of mid-April, he said.
AFP contributed to this story