Apr 27, 2020 08:58 PM

China Steps Back Medical Supply Export Controls

What's new: China has reversed a weeks-old policy that banned five types of critical medical supplies from being exported if they did not meet China’s domestic standards.

On Saturday the Ministry of Commerce, National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) and General Administration of Customs said coronavirus test kits, medical masks, medical protective clothing, ventilators and infrared thermometers could again be exported regardless of whether they had been approved for the domestic market.

Medical exports will still need to be certified for their target jurisdictions in order to clear customs.

Background: China tightened export regulations for medical supplies after a string of embarrassing episodes overseas where goods that were defective or unfit for their stated purpose were trashed or returned.

The new rules implemented April 1 required exporters of five key types of medical goods to show evidence they had been certified by the NMPA for domestic use before they could clear customs.

With health systems around the world scrambling to deal with their own outbreaks of Covid-19, there were fears the policy would further squeeze the supply of critical goods from a country that makes the lion’s share of them.

There were also concerns the policy would harm export-geared companies that had not previously needed local certification.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full Caixin article in Chinese, click here.

Related: China Bans Export of Uncertified Medical Supplies

Contact reporter Flynn Murphy ( and editor Gavin Cross (

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