Council Reports

May 16, 2019 – At their recent meeting, members of the C.D. Howe Institute Competition Policy Council concluded Canada’s competition policy toolkit is sufficient to address new forms of market power that may arise in the digital economy.  Governments worldwide are wrestling with public concerns about the perceived power and influence of “Big Tech” companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon.  Such players provide digital platforms for searching, shopping and social media and collect extensive datasets about users’ online activities.  In the face of populist appeals for a revamp of antitrust rules and pressure to directly regulate digital platforms, the consensus of the Council was that Canada’s competition law continues to...

Report of the C.D. Howe Institute Competition Policy Council The Competition Bureau should better define and clarify its legal view on when ordinary business practices or strategic alliances will be treated as offences and subject to civil review or criminal prosecution, according to a report released today by the C.D. Howe Institute. Otherwise, businesses may be inhibited in their ordinary activities, or inclined to avoid entering strategic agreements with competitors that would be of benefit to Canadian consumers. In addition, the Bureau has not pursued court actions testing the criminal provisions of the recently revised Competition Act, and this may have resulted in harmful price-fixing activities going unchecked. This is the...