NEW DELHI: The government has provided four more months till January next year to the domestic toy industry to comply with quality norms amid the coronavirus pandemic, an official statement said on Wednesday.
The Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), under the commerce and industry ministry, has issued a notification to extend the date of implementation of Toys (Quality Control) Order, 2020 "as January 1, 2021 in place of September 1 this year".
"This decision allows domestic manufacturers four months of extra time to make necessary arrangements for compliance of standards in view of difficulties arising out of COVID-19 pandemic," it said.
As the government is focusing on promoting domestic manufacturing of toys, it came out with a quality control order and also increased import duty in February.
Quality control order on toys is one of the ways to stop flow of cheap sub-standard toys into the market.
According to a study, about 67 per cent of toys failed all safety and standard tests, while about 30 per cent of plastic toys failed to meet the safety standards of admissible levels of heavy metals and phthalates.
Phthalates are a group of chemicals. The toys industry in India is primarily in the unorganised sector comprising about 4,000 small and medium enterprises.
About 85 per cent of toys are imported in the country, with maximum coming from China. It is followed by Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Germany, Hongkong and the US.
Recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that India has talent and ability to become a toy hub for the entire world and called upon startups to work towards realising this potential while being "vocal about local toys".
Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) is the government's nodal agency that frames quality standards in coordination with the ministries concerned.