World Consumer Day celebrated on March 15

“The consumer is not only a holder of rights, or a person in need of protection. He is above all an active citizen who demands his rights and acts with social conscience,” Secretary General of Commerce and Consumer Protection, Dimitris Avlonitis said on Thursday, in a message for World Consumer Day.

According to Avlonitis, more than 6,000 inspections have been carried out over the last two years to combat smuggling and ensure consumer protection.

“In any case, March 15 does not only belong to consumers. This particular celebration concerns healthy entrepreneurship, recognising that the diffusion of information in the digital age has made consumer confidence a key element for the smooth functioning of the market. Other important institutions of the country also participate in this, including the Consumer Ombudsman, with a significant role in the out-of-court settlement of disputes, or the General Secretariat for Trade and Consumer Protection, that supports citizens on the consumer telephone line (1520),” Avlonitis said.

Meanwhile, consumer complaints to the European Consumer Center were up 43.4 pct compared to 2016 and 215 pct in the three-year period 2013-2017. Complaints to the “Consumer Ombudsman” rose by 123 pct between 2013 and 2017.