The Qatar General Organisation for Standards and Metrology has decided to extend the warranty period for all types of tyres sold in the country from six months to one year.
Local Arabic daily Arrayah reported that Dr Mohamed bin Saif al-Kuwari, assistant undersecretary for Laboratories and Standardisation at the Ministry of Municipality and Environment, said the extension would give consumers enough time to detect defects, if any, through usage.
He pointed out that some commercial outlets often stored tyres in improper conditions, such as keeping them in the open and exposing them to direct sunlight and heat, which "causes damage that gradually appears with usage".
Dr al-Kuwari also warned consumers against importing tyres from European countries that did not comply with GCC standards. One reason could be that such tyres are generally made to meet European standards which demand compliance with cold and snowy conditions rather than the extreme heat in the Gulf region.
He said it had been observed that some people spent a lot of money in buying tyres from European countries and try to bring them into the country without the organisation's approval. "These are usually banned and not allowed in the country, which leads to big financial loss for people who buy such tyres."
He noted that the organisation had rejected a number of requests, in the past few months, to approve the entry of some European tyres due to lack of compliance with GCC standards.
The official explained that these were rejected as the tyres were not suitable for use in hot conditions as those experienced in the GCC countries. These tyres can only withstand temperatures up to 35 degrees Celsius, while the ones approved in line with GCC standards can do so for up to 80C.
He advised consumers to communicate with the organisation before trying to import any type of tyres to get the required information.
The government has taken several steps in the recent past to help consumers in the country by strictly implementing the provisions of the Consumer Protection law and issuing new rules, wherever necessary. One of these measures has been instructing automobile dealerships to loosen restrictions on vehicle warranties.
The Ministry of Economy and Commerce has told car distributors not to void a customer’s warranty solely because a vehicle was serviced by a third-party garage.
Dealers have been asked to give vehicle owners the freedom to choose shops to do maintenance and repair works of their cars. Most of the distributors have complied with the new rule.
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