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SPECIAL REPORT

Counterfeit refrigerants are increasingly found in the Middle East.

Counterfeit refrigerants throw a scare in UAE

DUBAI, January 7, 2015

A majority of residents of the United Arab Emirates are concerned about potentially dangerous counterfeit refrigerants, which are increasingly found in the Middle East, a report said.

More than half of the respondents to a survey in the UAE believe there are counterfeit refrigerants fraudulently labelled as brand-name, authentic refrigerants sold in the Emirates, added the survey conducted by technology company Honeywell as part of its campaign to fight counterfeiting.

More than eight of 10 respondents said they would prefer brand-name refrigerants to limit the risks posed by counterfeits, which can often be flammable, toxic and damaging to air conditioning and refrigeration systems.

Incidents around the world point to a significant danger from counterfeit refrigerants. In 2011, three refrigerated containers containing a counterfeit refrigerant exploded, killing three people. In 2012, an air conditioning unit in Brazil exploded due to a counterfeit refrigerant. Similar incidents in Greece, Germany, and Australia have also been reported.

Honeywell has fought the use of counterfeits for more than 10 years, helping local governments identify and seize counterfeit products all over the world. During the last two years, local governments working with Honeywell have seized more than 200,000 counterfeit products, said Norm Gilsdorf, president, Honeywell Middle East, Russia and Central Asia.

“We would like to applaud the local law enforcement and other government authorities in U.A.E. for taking the issue of counterfeiting seriously and cooperating with the industry to protect safety of citizens.

“Their efforts have resulted in confiscations in UAE and around the world. We continue to introduce technology solutions to help combat this problem,” Gilsdorf added.

Ipsos, a survey specialist company, working on behalf of Honeywell, surveyed 400 people via telephone in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah who own and operate one or more refrigerators or air conditioners for their home, office or vehicle.

Highlights of the survey:
•    57 per cent of those surveyed in UAE believe counterfeit refrigerants fraudulently labelled as brand-name, authentic refrigerants are sold in their country

•    81 per cent indicate they would prefer a brand-name refrigerant for their home, office, car or refrigerator if it would limit the risks posed by counterfeit refrigerants

•    73 per cent believe that counterfeit refrigerants can cause equipment failure more serious and costly than genuine brand name products

•    71 per cent believe that counterfeit refrigerants can be toxic, and 67 per cent believe they can be flammable.

Counterfeit refrigerants are a dangerous, persistent problem around the world. After several containers carrying counterfeit refrigerants exploded in 2012, the United Nations Environment Programme said that counterfeit refrigerants “appear to be a global issue of concern and a wider range of stakeholders are possibly at risk.”

Honeywell Fluorine Products is a world leader in the development and manufacture of refrigerants that are sold worldwide under the Genetron and Solstice brand names for a range applications, including building and mobile air conditioning as well as refrigeration applications, a statement said. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: UAE | Survey | Honeywell |

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