Italian prosecutor probes Turkish company over medical masks

Italian prosecutors have launched a probe over Chinese-made face masks with certificates issued by a Turkish company in Istanbul, Euronews Turkish reported on Thursday.

A study conducted by a private Italian company found that the FFP2-grade masks Turkey authorised had an efficiency level of 50 percent, instead of the 95 percent they should have to be allowed to use the FFP2 designation, it said.

FFP2 masks are used by individuals in high risk groups, especially by healthcare professionals.

The CE 2163 certifications for the majority of the masks that failed to comply with EU standards had been issued by Turkish company Universal Certification, company officials told an Italian newspaper, accordign to Euronews Turkish.

In response, Universal Certification said the assessment method used in the study couldn’t be used as reference for the company’s certification procedures, and that the manufacturer was responsible for the quality of the end product.

The certificates issued by the Istanbul-based company are used by manufacturers in Turkey and China, as well as Italy and Germany.

“What we experienced in Italy is a commercial company positioning itself as a market oversight authority,” Euronews Turkish cited Universal Certification as saying in a statement. “The claim that all masks manufactured by an authorised body negatively affects all manufacturers.”