Previously, comparative advertisements were planned to be permitted in Turkey from 10 January 2016 onward (more information). However, this date has been postponed to 31 December 2016, by a regulation published in Official Gazette number 29573 on 25 December 2015 (“Regulation”). Until the end of 2016, the Regulation on Implementation Fundamentals of Commercial Advertisement and Announcements will continue to apply, including a prohibition on using the names of compared goods, services or trademarks in advertisements.

Once the changes comes into effect at the end of 2016, Article 8(2) of the Regulation on Implementation Fundamentals of Commercial Advertisement and Announcements will allow advertisements to include “competitors’ title, trademark, logo or other distinguishing marks or phrases and commercial names and company names”, provided they meet certain requirements.

Accordingly, comparative advertising:

  1. Must not be false or misleading.
  2. Must not cause unfair competition.
  3. Must involve goods and services which have a similar nature and meet the same needs or demands.
  4. Must compare aspects of goods and services which are beneficial to consumers.
  5. Must objectively compare goods and services on at least one point which is substantive, essential, and certifiable. Comparisons can also be made about characteristic features and prices.
  6. If a claim is based on objective, measurable and numeric data, this should be proved by scientific tests, reports or documents.
  7. Must not denigrate or discredit competitors’ intellectual and industrial property rights, company names, other distinguishing marks, goods, services, operations or other features.

Please see this link for the Regulation (only available in Turkish).

Information first published in the MA | Gazette, a fortnightly legal update newsletter produced by Moroğlu Arseven.