Customs seize 830,000 masks falsely labeled made in Taiwan


TAIPEI (CNA) — The Customs Administration has seized some 830,000 masks falsely advertised as being made in Taiwan, health officials said Sunday.

The move came following allegations against a local face mask manufacturer to have imported over 3 million non-medical grade masks from China and sold them through the government’s face mask rationing program.

Tsai Shou-chuan (蔡壽洤), head of the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) division responsible for materials and supplies, said during a press conference on Sunday that the importers of the masks included members of the “National Face Mask Team.”

The members refer to private sector manufacturers requisitioned by the government to produce face mask machines and masks as COVID-19 began to spread from China earlier this year.

Tsai declined to disclose how many such manufacturers were involved or their names before related investigations are completed.

He said the details will likely be disclosed to the public in two weeks.

However, the CECC issued a statement after the press conference clarifying that it was not yet certain that members of the National Face Mask Team are involved.

Taiwan’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last week ordered the Taiwanese face mask manufacturer Carry Mask to halt operations after discovering that it had imported over 3 million non-medical grade masks from China in August and sold them as government-rationed face masks.

The FDA said the incident came to light after a pharmacist in New Taipei’s Sanchong District discovered that a mask shipment from the company contained a package labeled “Made in Anhui” in Simplified Chinese characters.