After making a previous ruling that it has no jurisdiction on the complaint aired by a senior citizen and election lawyer Romulo Macalintal that McDonald’s recently concluded promotional discount “is not senior citizens friendly,” the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has ruled in favor of Macalintal’s appeal.
In a clarificatory letter dated March 16, Assistant Secretary Ernesto Perez of the DTI Consumer Protection Group told Macalintal that “after a careful review of the facts presented and further inquiries by this office, we are of the view that you have indeed raised a valid complaint against the special promo [of McDonald’s]and which will be the proper subject of investigation by DTI’s Fair Trade Enforcement Bureau [FTEB].”
The DTI also agreed with Macalintal that in case of promo items, it is the obligation of McDonald’s to advise senior citizens (SCs) that they can choose between the promo price or the regular price after deducting 20 percent SC discount and 12 percent VAT exemption, whichever is higher or favorable to the senior citizens.
Thus, it affirmed Macalintal’s position that the P49 promo price should only be P42.24 for SCs and that notice should have been made preferably in the coupon for the SCs’ immediate information, and that the coupon should have no expiration date.
On Macalintal’s complaint that while the cup of coffee on the McDonald’s promo coupon pictures a “large cup” of coffee but only a “small cup” is actually given the customers, the DTI said it is “not too late for DTI-FTEB to conduct an investigation” of false, deceptive and misleading advertisement as penalized under Republic Act 7394 or the Consumer Act of the Philippines.