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While the economic effects of the pandemic have weakened, a period of social rehabilitation and wound healing has begun with the removal of restrictions imposed by the authorities. As in the rest of the world, Turkey saw high inflation rates during this period resulting in a fall in purchasing power.  The shift in economic realities has led to an increasing emphasis on consumer protection, making it particularly essential to draw careful attention to compliance with existing laws in the retail sector and to regulate in favor of the consumer.

As of August 2022, what has changed in the Retail Sector this year?

We can briefly summarize the main legislative changes concerning the retail sector since the beginning of 2022 as follows.

Amendments to the Regulation on Commercial Advertisement and Unfair Commercial Practices

Amendments to the Commercial Advertisement and Unfair Commercial Practices Regulation were published in the Official Gazette on 01.02.2022 and entered into force on 01.03.2022. The purposes and focus of the changes were mainly on preventing the consumers from being deceived.  The main changes made in this direction were:

  • The price offered by analyzing the purchasing behavior and other personal data of the consumer regarding a good or service is considered to be the "personalized price". In the event that a personalized price is offered to the consumer in this way, it is obligatory to inform the consumer by including the current and personalized sales price determined by the seller or supplier in the same field.


  • It has become obligatory to include the phrase "advertisement" in the ranking results displayed on Internet-based advertisements or sponsorship agreements and similar agreements.


  • According to the regulation, in the event that the sellers and providers or the intermediary service providers which mediate the drafting of distance contracts on their behalf, enable consumers to evaluate a product or service, or evaluate the seller and providers in the internet environment, these evaluations will only be made by the purchasers who buy the relevant goods or services.
  • In advertisements containing any written, audible or visual expression showing a discount for a good or service, it is obligatory to specify the “price before discount”.


  • The lowest price applied within thirty days prior to the date of application of the discount shall be taken as the basis in determining the sales price of a good or service before the discount.


  • The burden of proof that the calculation of the discount amount has been made in compliance with the regulations’ amendment is on the advertiser.

You can find the relevant changes here.

Amendments To Price Tag Regulation

The purpose of the amendments to the Price Tag Regulation, published in the Official Gazette on 18.02.2022 and entered into force on 01.03.2022, was to ensure that the will of consumers on making decisions while shopping is not distorted, just like the amendments to the Regulation on Commercial Advertisement and Unfair Commercial Practices. Along with the amendments in this legislation, the following were envisaged briefly:

  • In addition to the mandatory inclusion of factors such as the place of production, distinctive feature, and sales price including taxes, on the labels and lists, it is now  also obligatory to include the deposit cost in the labels and lists separately from the sales price of the packaged goods, and to write the information in Turkish.


  • It is envisaged that the labels placed on the goods which are offered for retail sale can also be placed on the product’s packaging or containers with an appropriate method.



  • The regulation outlines that the lowest price applied within 30 days prior to the application of the discount shall be taken as the basis when determining the sales price before the discount of the goods or services subject to the discounted sale.

You can find detailed information here regarding the changes.

Amendments to the Prohibition of Payments in Foreign Currency

The amendment, published in the Official Gazette on 19.04.2022 and entered into force on the date of publication, regarded the Communiqué on the Decision No. 32 on the Protection of the Value of Turkish Currency. The change aimed to reduce the effects of foreign exchange trade in the domestic market by making it an obligation to use Turkish Lira in the foreseen contract types, especially in commercial life.

As a general rule, this amendment made it mandatory to fulfill and accept contract payment obligations in movable sales contracts, other than vehicle sales contracts, t between Turkish residents in Turkish Lira. It was emphasized that even if the price of the contracts and other payment obligations arising from these contracts are determined in foreign currency or indexed to foreign currency, this obligation will still be valid.

You can find detailed information here regarding the changes.


Amendments to the Consumer Protection Law

The amendments of the Consumer Protection Law No. 6502, published in the Official Gazette on 01.04.2022 and entered into force on the date of publication, generally regulates the following:

  • In terms of intermediary service providers that mediate distance contracts between service providers and consumers in the marketplace, some additional obligations have been envisaged in order to accurately inform the consumer about the distance contract.


  • Administrative fines have been imposed in cases of non-compliance with regulations regarding discretionary guarantees and distance contracts, and in cases where the goods subject to the contract are not delivered or mounted on time.



  • Refurbished products were defined and a minimum warranty period of one year was given to the consumer from the date of delivery for these products.


  • Regarding consumer disputes, it was stipulated that applications can be made to the authorized district governorship where there is no consumer arbitration committee. It is possible to appeal against the decisions of the consumer arbitration committee to the consumer court where either the committee or consumer is located. In addition, in case the appeal succeeds as a result of submitting information or documents to the consumer court that were available but were not presented to the consumer arbitration committee, litigation expenses and attorney fees will not be awarded against the consumer.



  • In addition to important changes in consumer loans such as withdrawal from loan debt and benefiting from interest discounts without waiting, uninsured loan option in housing finance was also among the opportunities offered.

You can find detailed information here regarding the changes.

Rules Predicted by the Guideline Prepared by the Advertisement Board

The guidelines prepared by the Advertisement Board meeting, accepted as the principle decision numbered 2022/1 at the Advertisement Board meeting dated 12.04.2022 and numbered 320, aimed to guide advertising agencies, media organizations, vendors, providers, intermediary service providers and all persons, institutions and organizations related to advertising that use advertisements containing price information, discount sales advertisements and commercial applications. Some striking aspects of taking the decision in this direction are as follows:

  • Excluding compulsory and reasonable delivery costs, expressions such as "free" and "free of charge" cannot be used in cases where the consumer has to pay to obtain the goods. It is foreseen that the delivery and postage costs to be paid by the consumer will be included in the price.


  • Explicit approval of the consumer will be sought whenever a purchase entails additional payment obligations.


  • Products must clearly and understandably indicate the categories of goods or services and the price reductions associated with them, by using expressions such as “winter season products”, “…brand products”, “blue dotted products”, “buy one, get a discount on the second product/buy one, get one free” in advertisements regarding general discounts for different categories of goods or services.


  • The phrases “up to...”, “from...”, “until ...” will be indicated in legible size and the scope of the goods subject to the discounted sale will be determined in a way that would meet the reasonable expectation of the consumer.


  • It is forbidden to offer goods or services for a very limited period of time, contrary to the truth, in an attempt to deprive the consumer of the opportunity or time necessary to make an informed choice and to force the consumer to make a quick decision.


  • It has been regulated that extra care will be taken for discount sales advertisements and commercial applications for sensitive consumer groups (elders, disabled, children, etc.).


  • The guideline notes that the previous price, the start and end dates of the discounted sale, the goods or services offered for discounted sale, and if limited, the quantity, will be clearly indicated on the product and that expressions or images that may mislead consumers regarding the amount and scope of the discount or that may create the impression that more discounts are applied than in reality, will not be included in discount sales advertisements.

In addition to all these, detailed rules have been envisaged regarding advertisements containing price information. You can find detailed information about the guideline here.

Amendments to the Law on the Regulation of Electronic Commerce No. 6563

In light of social distancing rules during the pandemic, the electronic commerce sector where consumers have shown great interest, experienced its golden age, so to speak. The legislator envisaged making comprehensive changes to the Law on the Regulation of Electronic Commerce in order to protect the interests of consumers, protect intermediary service providers and non-negotiable service providers, as well as to create a healthy competitive environment regarding the rapid progress of the sector. The amendments in the relevant regulation will enter into force as of 01.01.2023 in general, except for the exempted provisions.**

It is useful to briefly mention the major changes published in the Official Gazette on 07.07.2022:

  • In terms of the Intermediary Service Provider, some additional obligations have been imposed on the marketplace regarding the content of goods and services offered by the Service Provider.


  • The supervisory authority of the Ministry of Commerce over the sector has been significantly expanded on the grounds that the electronic commerce sector is constantly developing and changing.


  • Commercial practices of the Intermediary Service Provider that seriously impair the commercial activities of the Service Provider and reduces its ability to make a reasonable decision or forces it to be a party to a legal proceeding are considered to be "unfair commercial practices".


  • In terms of the Intermediary Service Provider, many obligations varying according to the net transaction volume and the number of transactions have been envisaged, and heavy administrative sanctions have been determined to apply in case of violating these obligations.



  • An obligation to obtain and renew licenses is envisaged for Intermediary Service Providers with a net transaction volume of ten billion Turkish liras and a transaction number of more than one hundred thousand, excluding cancellations and refunds.


  • The regulation requires that the brokerage agreements made before the effective date of the regulation must be brought into compliance with the regulation within six months.

You can find detailed information here regarding the changes.

Heavy Schedule for Supervision

Given the legislative changes made in these first eight months of the year, we see that the legislator generally acts with the aim of maintaining price stability and protecting the end consumer in the high inflation atmosphere. It would not be wrong to say that the sensitivity to protect the end consumer is not only addressed in the legislative changes affecting purchasing decisions, but also in terms of the responsibility of protecting the health of the consumer. As a matter of fact, the data announced by the Ministry of Commerce shows that it will follow a consumer-oriented policy, especially from the last quarter of 2021.

According to the reports compiled by the Ministry of Commerce and prepared in line with the results of the inspections carried out by the Market Surveillance and Inspection Agencies, aimed at supplying safe and legally compliant products to the market, inappropriate and unsafe product lots were determined, and some administrative fines were imposed. The number of unsafe and inappropriate product lots detected in all quarters of 2021 and the first quarter of 2022 as well as the amounts of administrative fines applied in the relevant periods are set out in the charts* below.


The amounts of administrative fines applied for the relevant periods are as in the table below.


In the last quarter of 2021, "Food and Food Contact Substances" were the leading product class evaluated as “inappropriate” with a rate of 38%, while in the first quarter of 2022 it was elevators with a rate of 40%. Considering the inspections and administrative fines applied in the last quarter of 2021 and the first quarter of 2022, and the legislative changes that have come into force or will enter into force in 2022, we can say that the environment for the retail sector is being redesigned with a sharpened focus on consumer welfare. As a result, with both legislative changes and increased inspections, we see that many issues affecting the retail sector, especially in the last quarter of 2021 and the first six months of 2022, are carried out in order to protect the consumer, prevent deficit in consumption habits, ensure price stability and a healthy competitive environment, and enable the supervision and enforcement of similar practices. In addition, considering the uncertain economic indicators all over the world and the possibility of the pandemic reappearing, as is predicted by some experts, it is estimated that legislators will stay the course and continue to introduce similar regulations throughout rest of the year.

* The relevant data was obtained from the official website of the Ministry of Commerce.

**The relevant regulation also has provisions that will enter into force on 01.01.2024 and 01.01.2025. You may reach the details from our article.