China / Society

New measures to implement 7-day return policy for online shopping

By Liang Shuang ( Updated: 2016-09-28 21:36

Online shoppers in China will likely encounter fewer problems in returning goods, as a set of measures for the implementation of a return policy for online shopping has been put out for public feedback starting on Tuesday, according to a news release on the State Administration for Industry and Commerce's website. The measures allows consumers to return merchandise without providing a reason within seven days of receiving an item, provided the quality, functions, components and tags remain intact.

According to the policy, unpacking the goods to examine them and reasonable tests to ascertain the quality and function are considered legitimate uses and will not compromise the intactness. The policy applies if the goods are still able to be resold.

However, the policy does not apply to fresh food produce; downloaded music and CDs; digital products such as software; or newspapers and magazines.

In addition, products that are near their shelf life, that loose their value after trial use, or that are prone to changes in nature after opening are also exempt from the policy.

"We've been applying this policy since 2014," said a man surnamed Gao, who is a customer representative for a clothes shop on Taobao, China's leading e-commerce website. "We may lose revenue initially, but we do this so that shoppers return to us in the future."

The policy is a specification of the relative terms in Consumer's Law which came into effect on March 15, 2014, when the seven-day policy was initially unveiled. The specifications are projected to be effective from March 15, 2017, after considering public feedback.

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