Singapore

Other complaints against parallel importers

Several parallel importers have been flagged by the Consumers Association of Singapore (Case) in recent months.

Case's latest alert on Nov 4 was on TLC Cars, located at Turf Club Road, which received eight complaints.

Most customers complained that they had made partial or full payment for the purchase of a car, but did not receive the car on the promised delivery date.

Consumers have also told Case that the business owner is uncontactable and that the premises of the business had been vacated.

On Oct 31, Case issued an alert about De Auto Boutique and Exodus Global, which received 41 complaints from January to last month.

The complaints were mainly about consumers paying a deposit (from about $5,000 to $30,000) to the company to secure the deal, but failing to receive the car on the promised delivery date.

SMALL NUMBER

Nonetheless, the number of complaints against parallel importers is small compared to the number of complaints about the motorcar industry.

In 2015, the industry had 2,907 complaints, the highest among all the industries, said Mr Seah Seng Choon, executive director of Case.

The majority of the complaints were about defective goods.

Mr Seah said: "Although the number of complaints against parallel importers is not large, we do see more recent complaints of such companies collecting deposits from consumers and either failing to honour the agreement or closing down and leaving consumers in the lurch."

Mr Seah advised consumers to negotiate to pay as low a deposit as possible when purchasing a car and urged them to consider patronising CaseTrust-SVTA accredited motoring companies.

These businesses are committed to fair trading and have taken up a $50,000 insurance bond in the event of unresolved disputes.

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