Dubai – MENA Herald: The Department of Economic Development has met with representatives of major hypermarkets in Dubai to discuss the setting up Consumer Protection Counters across retail outlets for receiving and resolving consumer complaints amicably. Meetings have been concluded with seven hypermarkets, including Emirates Co-operative Society, Carrefour, Spinneys, Union co-operative Society, Géant, Lulu and Hyper Panda.

The Commercial Compliance & Consumer Protection (CCCP) sector in DED has asked major retailers in the emirate to set up Consumer Protection Counters by early 2017 as part of an initiative to help resolve consumer complaints without having to escalate them to DED’s Consumer Protection section.

The role of Consumer Protection Counters in resolving consumer complaints faster and in promoting trust between the trader and customer as well as the best international practices in dealing with consumer complaints and improving customer service quality were discussed during the meetings.

The proposed counters will serve as the first point of contact for aggrieved consumers before raising the complaint on the Ahlan Dubai number 600 54 5555. Teams from DED had visited the hypermarkets and briefed them on the initiative in the first phase, following which they agreed to set up the Consumer Protection Counters, said Mohammed Ali Rashed Lootah, CEO of CCCP.
“The Consumer Protection Counters should also display information on the consumer protection systems of the Department of Economic Development. Bilingual staff should be available to receive complaints in Arabic or English. The counter should maintain a record of all complaints, whether solved or unresolved, as well as the action taken on each of them,” explained Lootah.
Lootah stressed that the launch of the Consumer Protection Counters further expands the channels available for submitting consumer complaints, thereby reinforcing the relationship between the trader and the consumer. He added that the initiative is part of DED’s efforts to enhance competitiveness and sustainability of Dubai’s economy and strengthen the emirate’s advantages as an ideal business and investment destination.
“The next phase involves training and qualification of personnel nominated by the stores and hypermarkets in order to introduce them to the standards that must be maintained across the Consumer Protection Counters,” said Lootah.

As per DED guidelines the Customer Service Counters should be located in a prominently visible area. There are also clear instructions on the procedures to be followed in receiving consumers and their complaints as well as providing them information on DED’s consumer protection channels in case they are not satisfied with the service available at the counter.