Statement from the Commissioner of Competition regarding enforcement during the COVID-19 coronavirus situation
March 20, 2020 – GATINEAU, QC – Competition Bureau
Commissioner of Competition Matthew Boswell issued the following statement today regarding the Competition Bureau’s enforcement during the COVID-19 coronavirus situation:
“As Canada responds to the COVID-19 coronavirus situation, I would like to assure Canadians that the Competition Bureau remains vigilant against potentially harmful anti-competitive conduct by those who may seek to take advantage of consumers and businesses during these extraordinary circumstances.
The Bureau will scrutinize any evidence that companies or individuals have violated Canada’s competition laws, including:
- Deceptive marketing practices, such as false or misleading claims about a product’s ability to prevent, treat or cure the virus; and
- Collusion by competing businesses, such as illegal agreements about what price to charge for products or services.
We encourage anyone with information about potential collusion, false or misleading advertising or other forms of deceptive marketing to contact the Bureau. We will do everything in our power to crack down on these and any other anti-competitive activities in order to protect Canadians.
I would also like to assure businesses that Canada’s competition laws accommodate pro-competitive collaborations between companies to support the delivery of affordable goods and services to meet the needs of Canadians. Businesses engaging in collaborations should review the Bureau’s Competitor Collaboration Guidelines to ensure their activities comply with the law.
We are committed to a reasonable and principled enforcement of Canada’s competition laws, and we will work closely with our partners in federal, provincial and municipal governments, along with the business and legal communities, to navigate these exceptional circumstances for the benefit of all Canadians.
The Bureau is actively monitoring the evolving situation and we will provide further information on our enforcement approach as required.”
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