A South Australian refrigeration contractor misled customers about the cause of a price increase by blaming it squarely on the carbon tax, a watchdog says.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) on Wednesday said in a statement that Equipserve Solutions emailed its customers falsely attributing a price rise in refrigerant gas to the carbon price.
"Equipserve Solutions' statements had misled customers and caused them to believe that the entire price increase was due to the carbon price - when that was not in fact the case," ACCC chairman Rod Sims said.
The ACCC said Equipserve co-operated fully and it must now send a corrective notice directly to customers and post a retraction on its website.
"Businesses must carefully consider the basis for any pricing claims to ensure such claims are truthful and have a reasonable basis," Mr Sims said.
"If a business's suppliers have not attributed a price rise to the carbon price, then the business cannot assume that the carbon price is the cause of the price rise."
Equipserve has also promised it will not engage in similar conduct in the future and will implement a trade practices compliance program.