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New Competition law for modern times

OTTAWA - Changes in the global economy are prompting the federal government to update the Competition Act and the Competition Tribunal Act.

One change will give small business owners private access to the Competition Tribunal, allowing them more independence when dealing with local or private disputes under the Competition Act.

"We are committed to building a fair, efficient and competitive marketplace," said Industry Minister Allan Rock. "These new provisions provide the necessary tools to enhance compliance with the Competition Act, to the benefit of businesses and consumers alike."

Competition Act Changes

  • A new regulation will protect consumers who think they have won a prize. Asking these individuals for money or charging additional costs in order to claim the prize will be illegal. The law covers all forms of communication, including regular mail and e-mail.
  • The Competition Bureau will now look beyond Canada's borders when gathering evidence for non-criminal disputes, such as those involving monopolies. It will also provide a framework for future legal agreements meant to provide protection in these incidents.

Competition Tribunal Changes

  • Private access to the Competition Tribunal on disputes involving deal refusals, tied selling, exclusive dealing and market restrictions. Small and medium sized businesses will be allowed to deal with private or local matters on their own.
  • Evidence that could potentially harm a business will not be released before a court case is completed. This regulation excludes all mergers and specialization agreements.
  • Tribunal will be able to deal with references or questions regarding certain aspects of a case, or interpretation of the law, and then to award appropriate costs, if the information has no merit.
  • Competition protection in the Canadian airline industry will be improved.

For more information, visit the Competition Bureau’s website at


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