DOHA: The state consumer watchdog says it has not yet given up hope of disciplining car dealers and forcing them to reduce their prices.
One can hope to hear good news in the near future as far as the prices of cars and their parts are concerned.
A study has been launched to find a solution to the problem of high prices of automobiles and their accessories in the local market.
The head of the Consumer Protection Department (CPD) said on Monday that his department had fared remarkably in its efforts to discipline local car dealers, but the desired results could not be achieved.
There is a section exclusively dedicated to car dealerships at the CPD, said Sheikh Jassem bin Jabr Al Thani. “We have launched a study of the local automobile market to find a solution to the problem of high prices,” Sheikh Jassem said.
He was speaking at a Ramadan tent held by Al Sharq last Monday. He said that his department, in collaboration with the Interior Ministry and Industrial Development Department had conducted joint inspections and unearthed counterfeit spare parts.
The ‘country of origin’ on these parts was being changed in the Industrial Area. The violators have been caught and soon their identity would be disclosed, said Sheikh Jassem.
The joint inspection teams that have been set up are part of a new campaign the CPD has launched targeting automobile agencies, he said.
The counterfeit parts were detected and caught with help of experts from the Industrial Development Department and the importers of the famous car accessories.
In reply to a question, Sheikh Jassem said that steps had been taken to set up a consumer rights civil society. A contract to launch the society had already been signed.
Responding to another question, the director of the CPD said that telecom services do not fall within the department’s purview as per the law (Consumer Protection Law, Number 8 of 2008).
However, automobile and their accessories as well as some home appliances and electronic items fall within the CPD’s ambit. These items, if they are counterfeit, defective or their expiry dates have expired, can be replaced within two weeks after purchase.
Also, warranties given by companies in respect of products and services fall within the jurisdiction of CPD, said the director.