The Philippine government has strengthened its control on the use of lead and its compounds in the local production of consumer products, as well as its importation, sale, distribution and disposal to reduce the risks they brought to people and environment, a senior government official said Thursday. Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources ( DENR) Secretary Ramon Paje said that he recently issued a chemical control order (CCO) for lead and lead compounds following consultations with various stakeholders. He also said the order was in support of the global action for the elimination of lead in paints. The chemical can affect the development of children as well as the cardiovascular, reproductive and immune systems, impair the kidneys, and could also cause hearing loss and tooth decay, Paje said. The CCO for lead strictly prohibits the use of lead and lead compounds in the local manufacture of packaging for food and drink, toys, school supplies, cosmetics, water pipes and other consumer products. It also reiterates the ban on the use of lead as fuel additive, he added.