THE Department of Trade and Industry in Central Luzon (DTI-3) on Thursday, November 15, said consumer complaints received by the department’s provincial offices rose to 188 from 165 in the third quarter of this year.
The figure, the DTI-3 said, is higher than the same period in 2017, based on reports from the DTI-3 Consumer Protection Division.
Complaints about purchase of cellphones remained the top subject of complaints lodged with the agency.
For the third quarter of 2018, there were 27 cellphone-related complaints throughout the region compared to 22 in the third quarter of 2017.
Other products that were the top subjects of consumer complaints include television with 24 complaints, vehicles with 12, laptop with seven, motorcycles with seven, air-conditioning unit, washing machine and OR/CR with five complaints each. Other subjects of complaints include beauty products, refrigerators, watches, furniture, price tags, shoes and bags, among others.
The DTI Provincial Office in Zambales received the highest number of consumer complaints, at 39, in the third quarter of 2018.
This was closely followed by DTI Bulacan with 38 complaints received. DTI Bataan received a total of 37 complaints, while DTI Nueva Ecija received 13 complaints. Tarlac received 21 consumer complaints while DTI Pampanga received 27 complaints.
The DTI Regional Office received 12 complaints while DTI Aurora had only one consumer complaint received for the quarter.
DTI-3 continues to remind consumers to always request for warranty certificates or cards when buying consumer products.
The agency also asks buyers of electric and electronic products like Christmas lights, electric plugs, appliances and gadgets like cellphones to look for proper markings like the Philippine Standards mark or the Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) mark.
To make sure that these marks/stickers are not counterfeit, consumers are advised to check that these are hologram stickers and not reproduced stickers which unscrupulous suppliers without the proper authority to sell or make use of. The DTI has a Consumer Hotline (1-384) which can be called in case buyers have concerns with their purchases.