A PYMNTS Company

Canada’s Antitrust Regulator Pushes Merger Reform

 |  March 16, 2023

On Wednesday, the Competition Bureau of Canada issued a statement calling for updated merger review rules and proposed about 50 improvements to existing antitrust laws.

“Canada needs more competition. And Canadians need a modern and effective competition law to support that,” the Competition Bureau said in a statement.

Related: Canadian Competition Law Reform: A Diagnosis and Proposals for Reform of Canada’s Ineffective Merger Notification Rules

Decades of industry consolidation have left Canadians with fewer, more costly options in telecommunications and banking services. This lack of affordability has been further worsened by the rising cost of living. Consumer advocates point to the overwhelming need for choice and access in light of these trends.

The Federal Competition Bureau has outlined new proposals to improve merger analysis, strengthen deceptive marketing regulations and bolster market study practices. The bureau highlighted the need for enhanced merger review rules to counter market concentration issues and safeguard public interest in competitive markets.

The watchdog is coming off a major defeat in its efforts to block a C$20 billion ($14.6 billion) merger between Rogers and Shaw Communications to create the country’s No. 2 telecoms operator.