Business organisations told to comply with terms on offers

MUSCAT, APRIL 29 – Business organisations, both retail and wholesale dealers, were asked to comply with the terms and conditions and the contents of promises whenever they make an ‘offer’ on promotions or discounts, informed the Public Authority for Consumer Protection (PACP).
Speaking to Observer in the wake of the recent incident where action was initiated against some commercial entities that didn’t comply with the Consumer Protection Law, a senior official at the Commercial Fraud Control Department of PACP urged all to follow the executive regulations in order to avoid any legal action being initiated against them.
“All commercial establishments, whether they are dealing in retail or wholesale or goods or service, should live up to their promises when offers and promotions are made and non-compliance as well as lack of transparency and credibility is a punishable.offence under the consumer Protection Law”, said Al Fadhil bin Naseer al Yarmadi, Assistant Director of Commercial Fraud Control Department.
Any business which is not committed to transparency and credibility in its commercial declaration, which did not comply with its published announcement, and it provided the goods different from what was announced earlier in its advertisement tools, will be a.crime under Article (20) of the Consumer Protection Act and the Regulations thereof.
He further said that with the holy month of Ramadhan round the corner, companies tend to give big deals and tall claims in order to boost their business.
In the usual course of business, a firm can make offers and promotions, seasonal or otherwise, only with the approval from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MoCI) which will issue permission and later apply to the PACP the officials of which will inspect the premises of the company, verify the quality, quantity and fitness of the products and services and certify them to be offered to the public.
A number of commercial establishments were awarded with penalties for not complying with the terms and conditions of offers made by the retailer.
Al Yarmadi said they found to have violated the Consumer Protection Law issued by Royal Decree No 66/2014 and its executive regulations which stipulate lack of transparency and credibility in promotions and offers including ‘Sale’.
He further added that the inspectors of the Commercial Fraud Control Commission verify the credibility of promotional offers and discounts made by the various commercial establishments and commercial advertisements accompanying them and make sure commercial advertisements sent to consumers including text messages are genuine and met with.