Saudi Arabia/China: Cancer is Caused by Contaminated Goods from China?


A recent article in Arab news about the rise and cause of cancer in Saudi Arabia literally had me raising my eyebrows and laughing out loud.  I fear that the Saudi Consumer Protection Society (SCPS) has egg on its face.  I do agree with the initial statement that cancer cases are on the rise in Saudi Arabia. At least that is a fact.

The Chairman of the SCPS is quoted as saying that companies and individuals importing foodstuffs do not reveal the possible harm their products may cause. Period.  No more data or facts. However, then the article immediately segues to the import of goods from China which “could” contain cancerous materials such as fake tires and counterfeit car parts.

Some vague information is then cited pertaining to incidents and deaths from auto accidents.  Although the title of the article implied it was about cancer in the Kingdom instead it is a loosely jointed article which provides little information of benefit to the reader.

Cancer is on the rise in Saudi Arabia.  The article should have focused on the diet and lifestyles which are conducive to the growth of cancer.  The article should have focused on environmental factors which may be attributable to the growth of cancer. In my own view the Saudi Consumer Protection Society is not the appropriate organization to discuss on factors which attribute to the rise of cancer in Saudi  Arabia.  In my personal view the article would have better served readers by discussing associated challenges with imported goods from countries such as China, the type of fraudulent products being received and what measures are being put into effect to stop this process.  How are such shoddy and dangerous products bypassing customs and making their way in to the Saudi market?

The opening statement of the Arab News article is totally misleading to readers. “ The rate of cancer cases in Saudi Arabia is four times as much as international levels due to contaminated imported goods, according to the chairman of the Saudi Consumer Protection Society (SCPS) on Tuesday.”

I would like to see Arab News do a follow up which does go into detail about the legitimate rise of cancer in the Kingdom with an emphasis on how the lifestyle and diets of many Saudis are a fertile breeding ground for greedy and hungry cancer cells to fester and grow.  That kind of an article will be of much more benefit to Saudi nationals.


10 Responses

  1. “…the Saudi Consumer Protection Society (SCPS) has egg on its face.”

    In correct, the whole system has rotten eggs on its face.

    There is no transparent institutionalized accountability and corruption is rampant at every level of society. Those at the top can hardly blame the ones at the bottom for not doing their job according to internationally recommended specifications.

    The Saudi people are victims of a heartless and ruthless ruling and merchant men who only care about fattening their already bloated bank accounts.

    Anarchy and the survival of the fittest rule in the motherland and anyone who raises his voice inj favor of justice like law professor Mohammed Abdullah Al-Abdulkarim get abducted from his home and thrown in one of Prince Naif’s cozy dungeons.

  2. agree with you about lifestyles. however many counterfeit products, like toothpaste containg toxic materials, do have their origins in China.

  3. “Cancer is on the rise in Saudi Arabia…”

    Um, perhaps because diagnostics and treatment is improving, and more people are being accurately diagnosed?

    My uncle got very ill, and after seeing hoards of specialists who diagnosed him with everything imaginable from liver sorosis to stomach ulcer. Finally they gave him correct diagnosis, colon cancer. But it was too late, he was stage 4 by then, and shortly thereafter cancer spread to other parts of his body. He passed away shortly after diagnosis. If they would correctly diagnose him from the start, perhaps he could have had better chance of survival.

    We must look closely at data, and see what is behind the numbers. 50% rise in cancer, could be attributed to 30% more people seeking medical treatment (and getting out of their backward mentality) or 25% improvement in correct diagnostics.

  4. I read the article and was amused. I wonder what kind of fact checking they do at (my guess is very little).

  5. Cancer is on the rise everywhere. I would imagine that the Gulf War’s serious health effects are showing up now. There is truth in that some products from China have and do contain carcinogens and there are more than a couple of company CEOs in China who have gone on trial and at least one sentenced to death for substances like melamine in food (milk) products.
    The whole world is suffering from the increase of chemical in our food and particularly the phyto-estrogens in plastics, fertilizers, etc. Fish in some rivers are changing sex from the estrogens in water runoffs from farms to rivers for one small example.

  6. @Cookie,

    If there is any suspicion of a patient having symptoms common to cancer then I recommend getting in soonest to King Faisal Cancer Centre. My husband lost several weeks while we were in Saudi by getting all kinds of tests and no answers before we got to the KFCC in Riyadh.

  7. Like some of the other discussions here, the growth of registered illness ( Cancer, diabetes, kidney diseases, genetics disorder)
    demand, that the society accepts a scientific discourse on these matters, and also accept that part of the responsibility lies on each of the members of society.
    This isn’t necessary contrary to the religious discourse
    but ?
    Most cancers has a very long sleeping period, and demand many years of exposure to toxic materials, so what was the import from China 10 years ago ?
    Not Much – but that doesn’t mean, that you don’t have to be careful regarding imports, but saudi do have hundreds of qualified young people, so intensify the control.

  8. That has to be one of the most disjointed articles I’ve ever read. So let me get this right…

    Cancer is on the rise because dishonest people are buying counterfeit car parts from China and the price of Australian lamb is considered too high.

    Well… I don’t think my 10 years of experience in cancer diagnostics can fault that argument. Sounds pretty water tight to me.

  9. Exactly! I had to read the article several times myself and after doing so, could not resist using it as an example in the blog!

  10. I’m not laughing. I know a vet who is convinced that Chinese melamine in pet food killed a lot of his patients a few years ago. And Baskin-Robbins gave up on local production in favor of shipping ice cream from North America to China – apparently customers demanded it.

    Several years ago I, myself, measured elevated levels of radioactivity in the wicks of Chinese-made kerosene lanterns. I notified the retailer and it seems this item is not longer sold in the U.S.

    So until China has functioning equivalents to the Food and Drug Administration and other consumer safety agencies, it’s caveat emptor for everyone.

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