China tightens control on workplace safety

Updated: 2012-11-27 23:47


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BEIJING - Chinese companies that handle hazardous chemicals during manufacturing will have to obtain a permit as the country tightens rules on production activities, the work safety watchdog announced Tuesday.

Manufacturers that handle hazardous chemicals during production have to obtain a license from the local regulatory administration, according to the regulations published by the State Administration of Work Safety (SAWS).

The regulations, effective from May 1, 2013, also lay down rules that  companies formulate emergency plans and conduct drills accordingly to enhance responsiveness in case of an accident.

Producers running without the license, or those involved with license counterfeiting or illegal transferring, will be subject to fines of up to 200,000 yuan (31,805 U.S. dollars) and criminal penalties in cases of serious violation, according to the SAWS.

The number of deaths by accidents in China over the first ten months of 2012 dropped 13.7 percent year-on-year, data from the SAWS showed.

The work safety regulator also vowed to shut down 625 small coal mines that have safety risks by the end of the year.