The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has reportedly opened its first foreign office. Located in Beijing, China, the office was created to help reduce the number of unsafe Chinese products reaching the United States. More than 200 U.S. recalls of such products apparently occurred in 2010.

“It is very important we maintain a good relationship with the AQSIQ (China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine), as well as have a proactive approach in working with the Chinese government and Chinese manufacturers,” CPSC Chair Inez Tenenbaum said. According to CPSC, 45 percent of all consumer products and 90 percent of all toys sold in the United States come from mainland China and Hong Kong.

While Tenenbaum noted that the overall quality of imported Chinese products had improved, product safety enforcement in Chinese provinces is still challenging. The Beijing office will be staffed by an attaché and a safety specialist to help educate manufacturers and importers about U.S. product and safety standards. See BBC News, January 10, 2011; China Business News, January 11, 2011.