Wissol Has Stopped Selling “Api Super” Branded Gasoline
As early as last year, Transparency International Georgia highlighted the fact that, according to the information provided by both the Italian customs and the revenue service of Georgia, there was no evidence in their databases of the import of the “Api Super” branded gasoline (Octane 98) to Georgia. Thus, the gasoline that was branded under this name and was sold at Wissol gas stations in the country could not have been authentic gasoline of the “Api Super” brand. This constituted a violation of consumer’s rights and the illegal use of a trademark, which are punishable offences under Georgian law.
The case demonstrates the importance of effective competition policy and adequate state oversight of the compliance of companies with free competition rules and principles. Given that such oversight is non- existent at the moment, this practice by a privately-owned company can be regarded as a means of gaining an unfair advantage over competitor businesses. As it is known, Italian-produced merchandise is considered to be of high quality by the public and the mislabeling of the product may lead the consumer to make a misinformed decision when choosing the product.
Transparency International Georgia explained to Wissol Petroleum Georgia about the regulations currently in place, according to which the selling of mislabeled merchandise is a violation of the law. Our organization welcomes the fact that the company has taken notice of these consultations, and has ceased the sale of “Api Super” branded gasoline in its gas stations.
This photo shows Wissol gas station’s board before and after the publication of our research.