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Angra do Heroísmo ,  May 17, 2018

Regional Inspectorate of Economic Activities carried out more than 4,400 inspection actions in 2017

The Regional Inspectorate of Economic Activities (IRAE), an administrative authority under the jurisdiction of the Vice-Presidency of the Government, carried out 4,406 inspection actions last year. In this regard, 52% were conducted under the operational plans outlined by the services and 41% resulted from enquiry procedures following complaints made by consumers.
According to the Activity Report for 2017, there was an increase of 11% in the number of complaints compared to the previous year. The remaining interventions concern joint actions carried out with other entities, collection of samples, re-inspection actions, administrative offence proceedings and criminal proceedings.
With regard to these inspection actions, the document states that several issues were identified in food safety matters, compliance with the rules on the sales of tobacco products, hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP), and lack of hygiene and proper food labelling.
As for the economic area, the non-compliance with price-fixing rules, the use of complaints books and the indication of an alternative resolution of consumer disputes were the main identified infractions.
The Inspection actions mainly focused on non-food retail establishments (20%) and on restaurants and beverage establishments (17%). In turn, the remaining sectors of activity - services, industry, street vending, among others - registered lower figures.
In 2017, IRAE processed 2,564 complaints and reports, which corresponds to an increase of 5% over the previous year. This situation arises from the growth of commercial activity related to tourism.
The complaint sheets account for 68% of the overall number of complaints and reports processed last year.
In the Activity Report, IRAE stresses the importance it continues to attach to the fight against parallel economy. In this context, the infraction rate arising from these inspection actions stands at 8.9%, representing an improvement over 2016 (8%).
Regarding criminal and administrative offence proceedings, 73% concern economic offences, while the remainder are related to public health infractions.
Hence, the administrative offence proceedings were conducted in the areas of food safety - HACCP, the legal scheme on the access and exercise of trade, services and catering activities and the law on tobacco consumption.
Concerning criminal proceedings, the main offences were related to the sale of damaged food, fraud and speculation.
As part of the various measures implemented in 2017, a total 4,214, this entity responded to 330 information requests from consumers and economic operators. For IRAE, this demonstrates an informed and awareness-raising attitude on the part of regional economic operators.


Official government press-releases presented in all foreign languages interfaces of the Azorean Government Portal (Portal do Governo dos Açores) are a sub-set of the government's official press-releases daily output and are chosen for translation and publication on the foreign language interfaces based on audience segmentation criteria. The entire collection of the Azorean government press-releases is available in portuguese, here, from the GACS Press Office site.

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