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Importer fined for importing hairspray with excessive volatile organic compounds
     An import company in Kwun Tung was convicted and fined $7,500 at Fanling Magistrates' Courts today (March 7) for contravening the Air Pollution Control (Volatile Organic Compounds) Regulation by importing hairspray with volatile organic compound (VOC) content exceeding the legal limits.

     A spokesman for the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) said the importer imported a batch of hairspray from France last June. Samples collected by EPD officers were sent to the Government Laboratory for analysis, and the VOC content was found to be 91 per cent (by weight), substantially exceeding the legal limit of 55 per cent. The EPD subsequently prosecuted the importer according to the Regulation.

     VOCs are a major component responsible for the formation of smog, resulting in the regional air pollution and smog problem, the spokesman added. Starting from April 1, 2007, the Government gradually put under regulatory control the import and local manufacture of a series of products containing VOCs, including architectural paint, printing inks, vehicle refinishing paint, vessel and pleasure craft paint, adhesives, sealants, and various consumer products like hairspray.

     To avoid contravening the law, the spokesman reminded all importers and local manufacturers to ensure the VOC levels of the regulated products are in compliance with the legal limits before importing or manufacturing them.

     In accordance with the Regulation, anyone who imports into or manufactures in Hong Kong for local sale or use regulated products containing VOCs in excess of the legal limits commits an offence, and is liable to a maximum fine of $200,000 and six months' imprisonment.

     More information on the Regulation is available at the EPD's website: www.epd.gov.hk/epd/english/environmentinhk/air/prob_solutions/voc_reg.html#point_1.
Ends/Tuesday, March 7, 2017
Issued at HKT 17:42
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