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The move marks the latest sign of the growing power of the Chinese consumer, whose spending has fattened the bottom line of foreign and domestic companies alike but who has also shown a desire for safety and quality.
Two weeks ago, Ikea recalled 29 million pieces of furniture in the United States, where safety officials have blamed chests and dressers for the deaths of at least six toddlers in falling accidents. Ikea initially excluded China and Europe from the recall, saying that its products sold in those regions satisfied local regulations. On Tuesday, following criticism online and in government-controlled Chinese media, Ikea switched course, saying it would recall 1.7 million chests and dressers in China.
“Ikea is a very responsible company,” said Xian Jiaxin, a company spokeswoman, in an interview. “Consumer safety is very important to us, which is how we came to this decision.” The recall still will not be extended to the European Union, she said.
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