China Revokes 523 Drug Licences for Illegalities During Olympics

China's food and drug watchdog said on Friday that 523 drug licences were revoked for illegally producing or selling stimulants during the Beijing Olympic Games.

China's State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA) began a nationwide campaign against illegal stimulants by the country's drug makers and retailers before the Games to keep a clean Olympics.

The administration and the State Administration for Industry and Commerce had inspected all the authorized stimulant makers and revoked one producing licence for stimulants, said Shao Mingli, SFDA's director, at a tele-conference in Beijing on Friday.

The authorities checked 13,000 stimulant wholesalers and 341,000 retailers as well as 63,000 chemical plants and withdrew 522 selling licences, the director said.

The two administrations also dug out 45 chemical plants and 334 website operators for other illegalities, he said, adding that there had been no stimulant scandal during the Olympics.

However, the two authorities have not revealed any cases in which suspects or companies were arrested or fined for the illegalities.

Shao asked local food and drug administrations to learn a lesson from the recent milk scandal throughout the country, and to strengthen supervision work on various food and drugs.

China's domestic dairy firm Sanlu Group was exposed as having produce a toxic baby formula which has so far killed at least three babies and has sickened about 53,000 children in the country and put 11,000 in hospital.

(Xinhua News Agency September 27, 2008)

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