Consumer Law in Senegal and Potential Threats to the Welfare of Consumers in the ECOWAS Region

Research Paper (postgraduate), 2019

14 Pages, Grade: 10


Table of Contents



Consumer Law in Senegal

What potential threats to the welfare of consumers in the ECOWAS region

Final considerations







In Senegal, where consumer protection is the subject of legal action given in the Code of consumption, the institutions aim to enforce and to give consumers the means to defend their rights and interests. Despite these measures, however, disappointments and unfair practices are still common.

Thus, with the application of the Common External Tariff of ECOWAS since 1 January 2015, many goods and services circulate more cross-border. Therefore, the Senegalese consumer should be better protected. Hence the creation of the COUNCIL OF HIGH CONSUMPTION, whose mission is to provide security, because it is necessary to strengthen the coordination of national enforcement authorities and to deal with the risks associated with globalization of production.

Keywords: Consumer, Law, ECOWAS, Security, Senegalese.


Au Sénégal, où la protection des consommateurs fait l'objet de mesures juridiques regroupées dans le Code de la consommation, les institutions ont pour but de la faire respecter et de donner aux consommateurs les moyens de défendre leurs droits et leurs intérêts. Malgré ces mesures, toutefois, les déceptions et les pratiques déloyales sont encore monnaie courante.

Ainsi, avec l'application du tarif extérieur commun de la CEDEAO depuis le 1er janvier 2015, de nombreux biens et services circuleront de plus en plus transfrontaliers. Par conséquent, le consommateur sénégalais doit être de mieux en mieux protégé. D'où la création du CONSEIL DE HAUTE CONSOMMATION, dont la mission est d'assurer la sécurité, car il est nécessaire de renforcer la coordination des autorités répressives nationales et de faire face aux risques liés à la mondialisation de la production.

Mots-clés : Consommateur, Droit, CEDEAO, Sécurité, Sénégalais


Digital technology is an important leverage to change the living conditions of the population, particularly disadvantaged, and provides opportunities for modernization and promotion of socio-economic sectors with high growth potential, through the techniques and production technologies but also trade in goods and services.

Based on the digital sector performance, Senegal wishes to accelerate the main growth drivers for the improvement of production capacity and innovation in growth sectors.

The option chosen is to accelerate the spread of digital technology in the priority sectors identified in the Senegal Emergent Plan (PSE in French), on the one hand, promote access to basic social services (health, education, financial services ), and also significantly increase productivity by focusing on the increased use of digital technology in the fields of agriculture, livestock, fisheries and trade.

Senegal Emergent Plan (PES in French) aims to transform Senegal into an emerging country in 2035, "with a socially responsible society and the rule of law." It is in this context that identified a number of areas including development, essential to achieving this goal, including that of the digital economy.

Indeed, the digital economy is a cross-cutting area which includes all production, distribution and consumption of goods and services related to telecommunications and information technology and communication, their uses as heart or medium in industrial processes, economic and societal.

So, with all this evolution of information technology and communication in Senegal, no how not to care with the safety of Senegalese consumers. For this, the study of our first chapter, we will systematically analyze the vulnerability of the Senegalese consumer, but also to see the devices that Senegal has put in place to protect consumers against the risks of globalization has increased the Production of goods and services. This brings us to a so-called consumer society.

In the second chapter, we will study the risks Consumer situation in relation to community integration and globalization. Today, regional integration shows that Senegal is part of community organizations at the sub regional and regional or continental (WAEMU, ECOWAS, OHADA African Union), therefore potential threats to the well-being of the consumer ECOWAS member countries is not negligible. Like any community space, free movement of goods and services is generally lavished. This means that the Senegalese consumer will be in direct contact with products from another country of the space where may be the observation of product security rules do not meet the same standards as in Senegal.

Consumer Law in Senegal

The consumer law is born from the desire to provide the consumer facing professional protection that the law of contracts did not seem sure enough her.3

Thus, "the use of modern technology in today's societies, development and technical and scientific progress in human life, and also the need of human society in their use, have led to increased level production of goods and services. This remarkable evolution of human society will eventually set up a so-called consumer society. "4

Thus Thomas Diatta, points out that in this consumer society, there is a category of people called professionals who produce goods and services they offer to another segment of the population called consumers. In the relationship between consumer and professional, he has always been and always raises the question of safety first. According to the author, this question of consumer safety is acute throughout the world, particularly in Africa and Senegal.5

Thus, Professor Jean-Pascal Chazal, supports the idea to affirm the need to protect the consumer, he calls vulnerable to the professional person.

According to Chazal, by definition of the word vulnerable means the person or thing that may be injured. In a first direction, the injury (vulnus) is a synonym of wound, bodily injury. But quickly, even in classical Latin, ‟vulnerare” takes a figurative sense. It is used, for example, the damage to public order. Therefore, the vulnerable is one that can be injured in a physical sense but also in the sense imaged, one that is likely to be the victim of an infringement of its heritage, its property, its interests. The consumer seems to be vulnerable under these two senses.6

The CHAZAL professor, says that the vulnerable person in its consumer business, may suffer bodily injury in connection with the use of defective goods. It may also suffer pecuniary injury, which is the most common case in practice.7 So according to Chazal, the idea of ​​potential injury should be preferred here. For if the consumer has to be protected by the law, it is not because he is always injured, but because it is likely to be for the simple reason that defends evil, he is not well equipped to deal with his partner-opponent what the professional.8

The concept of "consumer safety", or more precisely the consumer's physical security poses enormous problems in his apprehension. Certainly, the words that made up the isolation are not elusive but mostly the term taken as a whole that is difficult to define. For example, to define the concept of consumer, it is important to distinguished it from related concepts such as the user, the user and the client. The user is a person who uses a public service, as opposed to the customer who is the one who uses the services of a private company.9

In terms of the consumer's definition may be debatable, but when it comes to consumer safety, it is quite clear that the consumer, as protected by consumer law, is the person who is offered or accept a contract offer for a good or service for non-business purposes. All individuals are therefore consumers at a time of day. At night when the baker buys flour to make bread for her children, it becomes consumer. By cons, in the day when he contracts for the purpose of his work, he acts as a professional.10

So to return to the notion of security, it can be difficult to define, but it must be understood as the state of mind of a person who feels calm and confident. It is feeling well or ill founded, to be free from danger and risk. But here the security word refers to the idea of ​​protection against risks that can threaten the physical integrity of the person.11

This for when we talk about consumer safety, the aim, not rules that would protect specifically and only the consumer, but the rules concerning the safety of that on which door customer activity.12 Henceforth we will talk protection that is so in fact the safety of these goods and services that the consumer is likely to get.

To return to the purpose of this, that is what interests us here is the protection of the Senegalese consumer.

So let us first interested in the geographical position of the Senegalese consumer. As we can see Senegal is a country crossroads (air, sea, road and rail). As such, it constitutes the stop and the bridge transit of most products within the African economic market in general and particularly in the West African economic market. Thus, in this country are meeting a variety of products manufactured locally or imported that are offered to Senegal consumer. And this diversity of products offered to the Senegalese consumer may subject to various risks related to the consumption.

But be reminded that there is another problem that causes Senegalese consumers to these products at risk. Most Senegalese consumers are not rich. So with the poverty that plagues the Senegalese population, not to mention the economic crisis, are pushing these consumers to lower products cost without worrying about his safety and health. In addition to his carelessness, the Senegalese consumer faces an economy which is heavily dominated by the informal sector. This segment manufactures and distributes products to consumers sometimes in complete disregard of the rules of hygiene and health and safety products.

Indeed, since independence until today, Senegal in its logic of protection of natural interests of the consumer has taken a series of laws and regulations to protect the health of people in general and especially the consumer. But one can also add health regulations on hygiene and specific texts for certain commodities, reinforce this legal arsenal of control for food safety.13

So include some examples in texts on:

- The health safety control of foodstuffs is governed in Senegal by a basic law: the 66-48 law of 27 May 1966.
- The Basic Law is supplemented by two decrees of general application, the 68- 507 and 68-508 laws of 7 May 1968.

The first specifies the import control conditions and measures of practical operating food.

The second decree treats control procedures, sampling, data entry and analysis in law enforcement fraud.

For drugs and other pharmaceutical products, there are also texts at this level. Only non-food consumer products and risk products (GMOs) that are yet on the market are not subject to regulation. Parliament seems to have focused on food, drug and pharmaceutical protection at the expense of other products that may also pose risks to the safety and health of the consumer. Next to this legislation, Senegal has set up official services control products.

In this regard we have:

- The Directorate of Plant Protection Phytosanitary Control by Legislation Division and Quality.
- The Directorate of Oceanography and Fisheries by the (Office of

Control of fisheries products and regional fishery services).

The National Service of Health in connection with the Ministry of Commerce

(Division of Consumer Affairs and Quality).

Thus, with such a device we realize that the security of Senegalese consumer is not fully guaranteed. So, to protect consumer safety, Senegal has put in place mechanisms for prevention and management of risks related to consumption. This means that safety must be considered in all its entirety. Senegalese Consumers should also be framed in their contracts with professional requiring security there14. Although the basic law, decrees and provisions on pharmaceutical drugs and specialties, there is some prevention and risk management with the control enactment and criminal or administrative sanctions as mentioned above, but it should recognize that this device is still insufficient. For, it may be noted that the major problem of Senegal today is the enactment of the Consumer Code or a law on general product safety is lacking.

The organization of the United Nations esteem in the guidelines "that governments should develop or maintain a strong consumer protection policy of drawing guidelines that aim to meet the legitimate needs below:

"Protection of consumers against risks to theirhealth and safety; Promotion and protection of economic interests of consumers; Consumer access to the information needed to make an informed choice 'according to their wishes and needs; Consumer education 'notably concerning the socio-economic impact and environmental choices they make; Possibility for consumers to obtain effective redress; The right to form groups and consumer organizations and other relevant groups and possibility 'for these organizations' to assert their views in decisions affecting them; Promotion of sustainable consumption patterns.15 "

For the United Nations Organization "Governments should provide or maintain adequate infrastructure to develop and implement consumer protection policy and monitor its implementation. It is important to ensure particularly that the consumer protection measures are implemented to the benefit of all sectors of the population including the rural population and the poor. "16

So consumer protection must remain a key concern for regulators.

In fact, the regulated operators are required to observe a strong work ethic and oriented towards satisfying the needs of consumers.

However, despite this gloomy diagnosis of the current state of Senegalese legislation, necessary to remember that the Senegalese consumer is not totally defenseless against risks that products may present for the 2002-23 was law in Article 5 has the same regulatory body is responsible for handling disputes between consumers and traders and that it must: "(...) act either as a peacemaker is to decide disputes between the licensing authority and dealers between companies in regulated sectors and between those airlines and consumers "17

Note also, in case of realization of risks and damages are suffered by a consumer, "one can assume that it can engage the responsibility of the manufacturer or distributor on the basis of common law and even to some extent that of the state. Civil law, criminal law, administrative law and EU law would be a great contribution to the protection of consumer safety. This protection goes far beyond the scope of consumer law. "18


1 PhD student in Economic Law at the Pontifícia Universidade Católica of Paraná (PUCPR) / Brazil. Master in Economic Law at the Pontifícia Universidade Católica of Paraná (PUCPR) / Brazil. Bachelor degree in International Relations IMAN / Dakar. Researcher in the UNINTER scientific initiation program in the Contemporary Theory of Jurisdiction and Public Law, with the tripartite project of the Authority and the New World Order - Courts, Administration and International Parliaments.

2 He holds a Bachelor's degree in law from the Federal University of Paraná (1984), specializing in philosophy of education, Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná (1988), master's degree in Latin American integration from the Universidade Federal de Santa Maria (2001) and PhD in integration of Latin America by the USP/PROLAM (2008). He is currently professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Paraná on graduation (where he was coordinator between 1987 to 1989), in post lato sensu where coordinates the specialization in law, logistics and international business, and the doctoral sensu, in master's and doctoral degrees. Former professor and former " (2005-2010) of law school international school Curitiba, professor of the Centro Universitário Curitiba and FAMEC. This 1984 Attorney-at-law and legal consultant, working mainly on the following themes and areas: contracts, regional integration, MERCOSUR, international relations, maritime law, customs law, international economic law and international law. Coordinator of the NEADI ( Member of Centre of Arts of Paraná and the Institute of Lawyers of Paraná.

3 RZEPECKI, Nathalie. Consumer law and general theory of contrat.Nouvelle edition [online]. Aix-en-Provence: University Press of Aix-Marseille, 2002 (generated February 27, 2019). Available on the Internet: <>. ISBN: 9782821853379. DOI: 10.4000 / books.puam.479.


5 Id.

6 CHAZAL, Jean Pascal. Vulnerability and consumer law. Cohet-Cordey, Frédérique. Symposium on vulnerability and law, in March 2000, University P. Mendes-France, Grenoble II, France. Presses Universitaires de Grenoble, pp.00-00, 2000.

7 Id.

8 Id.

9 Security of Senegalese consumer. Available on: Published on December 2, 2011. Accessed 03.21.2019.

10 Id..

11 Id.

12 Id.

13 Id.

14 Id.

15 United Nations Conference on Trade and Development 'Principles United Nations Guidelines for Consumer Protection (as expanded in 1999)' New York and Geneva '2001 UNCTAD / DITC / CLP / Misc.21' p.3

16 id

17 Statement of reasons law No. 2002-23 of 4 September 2002 'with regulatory framework for dealers to utility companies. Available at: Accessed 07.03.2019.

18 Security of Senegalese consumer. Available on: Published on December 2, 2011. Accessed 03.21.2019.l

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Consumer Law in Senegal and Potential Threats to the Welfare of Consumers in the ECOWAS Region
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Consumer, Law, ECOWAS, Security, Senegalese.
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Jean Karim Coly (Author)Luis Alexandre Winter Carta (Author), 2019, Consumer Law in Senegal and Potential Threats to the Welfare of Consumers in the ECOWAS Region, Munich, GRIN Verlag,


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