Impak Bioteknologi ke atas Perlindungan Pengguna : Aspek Undang-undang Berhubung Keselamtan Produk (Biotechnology Impacts on Consumer Protection: Legal Aspects in Relation to Product safety)

Azimon Abdul Aziz, Zeti Azura Mohamed Hussein

Abstract


Consumer protection in Malaysia in now facing a great challenges due to the impact of globalization and the advancement of new technologies which resulted into various creativities and innovations. Biotechnology is a branch of science and technology in which its use and contribution to society have been endless and it still promises new things to come. Besides providing benefits, it also invites various challenges in many aspects of life, particularly in the aspect of product safety to the consumer. There is growing evidence that biotechnology products is increasing in consumer market especially with the existance of GMO (a product of modern biotechnology) where consumers are having difficulties in determining its level of safety. Consumers have no knowledge of the risks and defects of each product. With the inequality of bargaining power associated with the information gap between consumers and market providers, consumers need a legal mechanicsm to protect them against the risks which they have to bear. This paper aims at exploring the issue of consumer protection as regards to product safety in biotechnology products. Hence, adopting a pure legalistics analysis with content analysis at its core. this article focuses on the development of consumer protection and biotechnology in Malaysia. By adopting the hiostorical, analytical, critical and jurisprudence method, this paper also will examine the sufficiency of legal protection given to consumer in dealing with the issue of product safety. The study shows that the law on this aspect needs reformation as a move to give more protection to cunsumers.

ABSTRAK

Perlindungan pengguna di Malaysia kini berada dalam era yang penuh cabarab ekoran ledakan globalisasi dan kepesatan teknologi yang menghasilkan pelbagai kreativiti dan ciptaan. Bioteknologi merupakan satu cabanf sains dan teknologi di mana penggunaan dan sumbangannya kepada masyarakt adalah tidak ternilai banyaknya dan masih lagi menjanjikan sumbangan - sumbangan mendatang. Selain memberi banyak manfaat, pada masa yang sama, ia turut mengundang pelbagai cabaran dalam pelbagai aspke kehidupan khususnya dari aspek keselamatan produk pengguna. Tidak dinafikan bahawa produk-produk pengguna yang dihasilkan melalui proses bioteknologi semakin bertambah di pasaran khususnya dengan kewujudan GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) yang lahir dari penggunaan proses bioteknologi moden di mana pengguna menghadapi kesukaran dalam menentukan tahap keselmatan dalam penggunaanya. Pengguna tidak mengetahui risiko dan pencemaran yang dihasilkan oleh setiap produk. Ditambah dengan ketidakseimbangan kuasa perundingan antara pengguna dan peniaga serta jurang maklumat yang wujud antara mereka daripada risiko yang mereka tanggung. Kertas kerja ini cuba merungkaikan persoalan perlindungan ke atas pengguna daripada penggunaan produk-produk bioteknologi dengan memfokus kepada perkembangan perlindungan pengguna dan bioteknologi di Malaysia. Melalui pendekatan historis, analisis dan kritis serta jurisprudens, artikel ini turut melihat kecukupan perundangan dalam memberi perlindungan kepada pengguna berhubung permasalahn keselamatan produk. Kajian ini menunjukkan bahawa satu reformasi perundangan adalah diperlukan dalam menangani permasalahan ini sebagi langkah memberi lebih perlindungan kepada pengguna.


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