HC Deb 06 August 1976 vol 916 cc1215-6W
Mr. Freud

asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection (1) if she considers that she has sufficient powers to protect the consumer in the matter of filling stations that display misleading "offers"; and if she will make a statement;

(2) what steps she intends to take in respect of filling stations that advertise discounts without disclosing the price from which the discount is given;

(3) if she is satisfied that the current "cut price" signs at pertol filling stations are in the best interest of consumer protection.

Mr. Maclennan

The Trade Descriptions Act 1968 already provides consumers with considerable protection against false claims about price reductions. However, I have been concerned for some time about the confusing way in which information on petrol prices is displayed at many filling stations, particularly where offers are made of discounts or cut prices. Negotiation have been proceeding with the industry on the adoption of a voluntary code of practice relating to claims of reduced prices, aimed at telling the motorist the price he will actually have to pay for petrol before he enters a filling station. I hope agreement will soon be reached so that we do not have to consider introducing legislation to this effect.

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