DTI bats for sustainable packaging of merchandise sold online
MANILA -The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) wants provisions on sustainable packaging to be included in the implementing rules and regulations of the proposed Internet Transactions Act, citing the need to reduce excessive plastic waste from goods ordered online.
During the DTI’s Saturday morning radio program at dzBB, it was discussed that some online sellers were using too much bubble wraps when shipping out their products.
“Once the framework for this law has been completed, we should remember and include this when we issue the guidelines,” said Trade Assistant Secretary Mary Jean Pacheco, who is currently the officer in charge of the DTI’s consumer protection group.
Pacheco said that for sustainability efforts to be successful, both manufacturers and consumers would need to do their part.
Bicameral meeting soon
“As consumers, you shouldn’t also keep on buying products with plastic packaging and then just keep throwing the plastic away,” she said.
On Monday last week, the Senate approved on third and final reading the Internet Transactions bill, moving closer to the passage of one of the Marcos administration’s priority legislative measures.
In December of last year, the House of Representative already passed its own version, meaning that lawmakers from both chambers will soon have a bicameral meeting to agree on a single, unified version of the measure.
The bill aims to hold digital platforms or e-marketplaces liable, along with the online merchants or retailers, for selling products that cause harm to consumers.
According to records from the DTI, it received 5,701 complaints related to online transactions during the first five months of this year, a figure that is nearly half the 12,170 complaints it had received for the whole of 2022.
In each of the two years prior, the government agency respectively received 12,152 and 15,967 of these types of complaints.
Aside from making online platforms more liable, the proposed law will mandate the creation of an e-commerce bureau under the DTI that will oversee internet-based activities that presently lack regulation.
Under the proposed law, the trade secretary will be given authority to issue takedown orders if the goods, services or digital products advertised being sold in online platforms are found to be “imminently injurious, unsafe or dangerous to the public.” INQ