London – UK industry body the Approved Cables Initiative (ACI) is re-investigating the source of sub-standard cables in the UK market, having previously stated that the products were manufactured by Wasung Electric Cable Company ,a subsidiary of the LongZ Group.
ACI's initial announcement prompted a response from bon fide supplier Guangdong Wasung Cable Co.,Ltd*, which said it is pursuing the issue in the UK, while their law firm is dealing this legal case with LongZ in China now.
On 8 Sept, ACI issued a statement warning distributors about 85,000 metres of sub-standard rubber and TQ flexible cables supplied earlier this year to UK-based Doncaster Cables.
The cables, said ACI, were purchased from the Wasung Electric Cable Co., which it described as a subsidiary of the LongZ Group.
In a statement supplied subsequently to ERJ, Wasung Cable said: "Guangdong Wasung Cable Co.,ltd or Guangdong Huasheng Electrical Appliances Co.,Ltd has no relationship with LongZ Group,"
Wasung Cable Co., based in Foshan, Guangdong was set up in May 2015 as a subsidiary of Shenzhen-listed Huasheng Electrical Appliances, specialized in manufacturing rubber flexible cables and power cords, which had sales of 1.5 billion yuan (€208 million) in 2014, according to its annual report, the group companies are the top rubber flexible cables (sizes from 0.75mm2 to 630mm2 ) manufacturer in China.
Wasung Cable Co.’s products are made in three plants owned by the parent company – two in Foshan, Guangdong and one in Yangzhou, Jiangsu.
Tini Zhao, Wasung Cable Co. vice general manager in charge of export, said the company had never done any business with Doncaster Cable, and had no relation to LongZ.
"We actually heard the news from our customers and it's quite appalling," said Zhao. "We've hired lawyers in the UK to deal with this issue. We also learnt there are fake Wasung products sold to the Middle East, too."
The Chinese trail started when Doncaster Cables contacted the LongZ Group to quote for the supply of several sizes of rubber flexible cords. Requested samples were received and tested by Doncaster Cables and found to meet required specifications.
"Placing an order with LongZ for nine different cables, Doncaster clearly stated that the required cables must fully comply with relevant British and European Standards, should carry the CE mark – in accordance with the Low Voltage Directive (LVD)) – and be accompanied by certificates of conformity.
"The accompanying packing list and invoice for the ordered cable clearly stated the correct H05RR-F reference numbers and specific conductor sizes," said ACI.
However, when tested by Doncaster Cables, the supplied cables all failed due to high resistance and in some cases sticking cores because of uncured rubber insulation.
Test reports were sent to LongZ "where upon receipt the CEO expressed surprise at the findings and said that these cables were sold into the UK and throughout Europe on a regular basis without any problems," ACI reported.
Further independent testing, commissioned by ACI, confirmed that cables did not meet the requirements of British and European Standards due to high conductor resistance. They also had re-strippability issues and had no manufacturer’s identification or country of origin on the cable or labelling.
ACI wrote to LongZ several times since early September, informing the CEO of its findings and asking for a response, but has yet to receive a reply, according to Peter Smeeth, a director of the ACI.
However, Wasung Cable Co. has been in contact with ACI about the case and the UK body is now further "investigating" the source of the problem cables, Smeeth told ERJ 13 Oct.
Reference to Wasung Electric Cable Co. has now been removed from the statement about the case on the ACI website.
Liverpool-based ACI was set up about five years ago by the British Cable Association in response to the number of substandard cables entering the UK market.
(*Guangdong Wasung Cable Co., Ltd, No.13, Changbao East Road, Huakou Industrial Zone, Rong gui, Shunde District, Foshan City, GuangDong Province, PR China 528306. Tel : +86-757-26683273, fax:+86-757-26683276. Website:www.wasungcable.com Contact person: Phoebe Chung, oversea marketing manager, email:[email protected], mobile:+86-13822725432 )