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Competition Appellate Tribunal upholds CCP’s order against P&G for deceptive marketing

Competition Appellate Tribunal upholds CCP's order against P&G for deceptive marketing
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March 13, 2024 (MLN): The Competition Appellate Tribunal has upheld the Competition Commission of Pakistan's (CCP) order against Proctor and Gamble Pakistan (P&G) for engaging in deceptive marketing practices and has dismissed P&G's appeal to set aside CCP’s ruling.

In its ruling, the Tribunal also stated that the CCP has the authority to determine the legitimacy of a complaint and to decide whether to accept or dismiss it based on the complaint's merits.

The CCP had imposed a penalty of Rs10 million on P&G for falsely advertising its product Safeguard as Pakistan's No. 1 anti-bacterial soap.

However, the Tribunal reduced the penalty to Rs5m, considering P&G's compliance-oriented approach and the fact that P&G had dropped the No-1 claim shortly after the initiation of inquiry by the CCP in 2014.

The inquiry was initiated based on a complaint filed by Reckitt Benckiser Pakistan Limited, alleging that P&G's advertisement campaign for Safeguard was misleading.

The CCP concluded that P&G's advertisement campaign violated Section 10 of the Competition Act by creating the overall impression that Safeguard was Pakistan's top-rated anti-bacterial soap. It lacked a reasonable basis to substantiate the claim.

During the appeal, the Tribunal noted that the studies cited by P&G to support its claim were based on public opinions and lacked scientific research.

While the exact monetary loss due to such claims could not be assessed, the Tribunal acknowledged the potential harm such claims could have on competitors' business.

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Posted on: 2024-03-13T14:18:26+05:00