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Trade Descriptions (Unfair Trade Practices) (Amendment) Ordinance 2012 takes effect today (with photos)

     The Trade Descriptions (Unfair Trade Practices) (Amendment) Ordinance 2012 (the Ordinance) comes into effect today (July 19).

     Traders are reminded to comply with the related requirements to avoid violating the Ordinance while consumers are encouraged to better understand unfair trade practices in order to shop with prudence and with wise decisions.

     A spokesperson for the Customs and Excise Department (the Customs) said, "We will continue to maintain close communications with the industries on compliance with the fair trading sections of the Ordinance."

     The spokesperson said that the Customs conducted a series of education programmes including the visits in June and July to some 320 traders of different industries, including beauty and fitness centers, online group buying companies, travel agencies and tutorial centers.

     The Customs also held more than 20 workshops and seminars for various industries and distributed the Enforcement Guidelines and pamphlets to traders.

     Consumers are advised to acquire more information before shopping to avoid falling into traps employing possible sales tricks and tactics. Before shopping, consumers are advised:

* to gather information on the product or service as well as users' experience;
* to make comparisons of prices, quality and functions;
* to ask for more detailed information not provided in advertisements and promotional messages;
* to stay alert and do ask if in doubt; and
* to turn down suspicious offers firmly and leave the shop immediately.

     Up to 3pm today, 95 enquiries and four complaints were received via the Customs' hotlines.

     In addition to hotlines, traders and consumers may refer to examples of unfair trade practices contained in the Enforcement Guidelines from the Customs website: .

     The pamphlets of the Ordinance are available at the Public Enquiry Service Centers of the Home Affairs Department. The Customs Enquiry Hotline is 2815 7711 and the Complaint Hotline is 2545 6182.

Ends/Friday, July 19, 2013
Issued at HKT 20:49


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