New Consumer Protection Act Will Come into Effect on 1 April 2011
On the 1st of April this year, the new Consumer Protection Act comes into effect.
Western Cape Minister of Economic Development and Tourism, Alan Winde, said: "The Consumer Protection Act will radically overhaul the manner and form in which business is conducted within our country. One of the important elements introduced by the Act is the acknowledgement of the rights that all of us as consumers will now be able to enjoy. Previous legislation ignored these principles and for the first time we have statutory recognition of our right to confidentiality, information, disclosure, fairness, transparency, choice, safety and redress. From 1 April onwards, it will not only be disrespectful, but illegal, to ignore consumers'rights."
The legislation will furthermore create a far better environment within which the various consumer protection authorities, both at national and provincial level, will be able to effectively regulate and enforce the various provisions aimed at enhancing the relationship between consumers and business.
Winde continued: "It is imperative for companies to determine the extent to which the Act applies to them so that the new business risks can be mitigated." The solution will have to be organisation wide, working through each of the company's functional areas so as to standardise compliance while optimising business productivity and the operational requirements of the organisation.
Issued By: Western Cape Minister of Economic Development and Tourism, Alan Winde & The Western Cape Office of the Consumer Protector.