ACCC to investigate bogus ‘made in Australia’ claim

The ACCC has started an investigation into two firms following allegations of false or misleading claims about the country of origin for the solar panels they supply.

In a statement yesterday the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission said P&N and P&N NSW had allegedly made false claims about the solar panels they sell.


“The ACCC alleges that since November 2012, Euro Solar and Australian Solar Panel have made representations online, in newspapers and on television that they manufacture or supply solar panels that are made in Australia, when those solar panels are in fact manufactured in China,” it said.


“It is further alleged that written testimonials that appeared on, from January 2013 to February 2013, and video testimonials that appeared on YouTube and, from May 2012 to February 2013, were not made by genuine customers of Australian Solar Panel or Euro Solar.”


ACCC chairman Rod Sims said the watchdog was currently prioritising work in the area of fake claims, and along with the two companies Nikunjkumar Patel would also be investigated for being a party to the alleged misconduct.


“Consumers should be able to rely on the accuracy of labels, especially when they are prepared to pay a premium for products made in Australia. Misleading credence claims can have a significant impact on the competitive process and hurt the local economy,” he said.


The dispute has been filed in the Federal Court and is listed for a scheduling conference in Adelaide on July 8.