HongKong's Trade Description Ordinance Update - Seedready (Hong Kong)

HongKong's Trade Description Ordinance Update

Monday, 22 July 2013 08:00
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In July 2013, HongKong's legislative council has updated the Trade Description Ordinance, which makes a more completed law to control in advertisements, product and service description.  Those changes make affect your current marketing materials and sales. We have highlighted some updates and a government video below, you can also read the full story from Hongkong legislative council.

According to legislative council's update that

Information to be given in advertisements has to be:

  • a) any description of advertisements of any goods or services specified in the order shall contain or refer to information (whether or not amounting to or including a trade description) relating to such goods or services and subject to the provisions of this Ordinance impose requirements as to the inclusion of that information or of an indication of the means by which it may be obtained. (Amended 65 of 2000 s. 3)
  • b) An order under this section may specify the form and manner in which any such information or indication is to be included in advertisements of any description and may make different provision for different circumstances.
  • c) Where an advertisement of any goods to be supplied in the course of any trade or business, or of any services to be supplied by a trader to a consumer, fails to comply with any requirement imposed under this section, any person who publishes the advertisement commits an offence. (Read Full)

 

Description for Average consumer

  • 1) In determining the effect on the average consumer of a commercial practice that reaches or is directed to a consumer or consumers, account must be taken of the material characteristics of such an average consumer including that the consumer is reasonably well informed, reasonably observant and circumspect.
  • 2) In determining the effect on the average consumer of a commercial practice in the circumstances specified in subsection (3), a reference to the average consumer is a reference to the average member of the particular group of consumers.
  • 3) For the purpose of subsection (2) the circumstances are— a) where the commercial practice is directed to a particular group of consumers; or b) where— i) a clearly identifiable group of consumers is particularly vulnerable to the commercial practice or the underlying product because of mental or physical infirmity, age or credulity in a way which the trader could reasonably be expected to foresee; and ii) the practice is likely to cause the average member of that group only to make a transactional decision that the member would not have made otherwise.
  • 4) Subsection (3)(b) does not prejudice the common and legitimate advertising practice of making exaggerated statements which are not meant to be taken literally. (Read Full)

 

Misleading omissions in description

  • 1) A trader who engages in relation to a consumer in a commercial practice that is a misleading omission commits an offence.
  • 2) A commercial practice is a misleading omission if, in its factual context, taking account of the matters in subsection (3)— (a) it omits material information; (b) it hides material information; (c) it provides material information in a manner that is unclear, unintelligible, ambiguous or untimely; or (d) it fails to identify its commercial intent, unless this is already apparent from the context, and as a result it causes, or is likely to cause, the average consumer to make a transactional decision that the consumer would not have made otherwise.
  • 3) The matters referred to in subsection (2) are—  (a) all the features and circumstances of the commercial practice; (b) the limitations of the medium used to communicate the commercial practice (including limitations of space or time); and (c) if the medium used to communicate the commercial practice imposes limitations of space or time, any measures taken by the trader to make the information available to consumers by other means.
  • 4) If a commercial practice is an invitation to purchase, the following information is material, if not already apparent from the context— (a) the main characteristics of the product, to the extent appropriate to the product and to the medium by which the invitation to purchase is communicated; (b) the identity (such as trading name) of the trader and of any other trader on whose behalf the trader is acting; (c) the address (not including a postal box address) of the trader’s usual place of business and of any other trader on whose behalf the trader is acting; (d) either— (i) the price, including any taxes; or (ii) if the nature of the product is such that the price cannot reasonably be calculated in advance, the manner in which the price is calculated; (e) where appropriate, either— (i) all additional freight, delivery or postal charges; or (ii) if those charges cannot reasonably be calculated in advance, the fact that they may be payable; (f) the following matters if they depart from the requirements of professional diligence— (i) arrangements for payment; (ii) arrangements for delivery of goods; (iii) arrangements for supply of service; (g) for products in relation to which there is a right of withdrawal or cancellation, the existence of that right. (Read full)

Bait advertising

  • 1) A trader who engages in relation to a consumer in a commercial practice that constitutes bait advertising commits an offence.
  • 2) Subject to subsection (3), advertising by a trader of products for supply at a specified price is bait advertising if there are no reasonable grounds for believing that the trader will be able to offer for supply those products at that price, or the trader fails to offer those products for supply at that price, for a period that is, and in quantities that are, reasonable, having regard to— (a) the nature of the market in which the trader carries on business; and (b) the nature of the advertisement.
  • 3) Advertising by a trader of products for supply at a specified price is not bait advertising if— (a) the advertisement states clearly the period for which, or the quantities in which, the products are offered for supply at that price; and (b) the trader offers those products for supply at that price for that period or in those quantities. (Read Full)

Bait and switch

  • 1) A trader who engages in relation to a consumer in a commercial practice that constitutes a bait and switch commits an offence.
  • 2) The making by a trader of an invitation to purchase a product at a specified price is a bait and switch if, having made the invitation, the trader then, with the intention of promoting a different product— (a) refuses to show or demonstrate the product to consumers; (b) refuses to take orders for the product or deliver it within a reasonable time; or (c) shows or demonstrates a defective sample of the product. (Read Full)

 

Sources:
1. http://www.legislation.gov.hk/blis_ind.nsf/WebView?OpenAgent&vwpg=CURALLENGDOC*362*100*362.1

Read 2531 times Last modified on Tuesday, 24 February 2015 11:48

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Information Services Department, Hong Kong SAR Government

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