Proposed Amendment to Canada’s Competition Act to Prohibit “Unjustified” Cross-Border Price Discrimination

Authors: Mark C. Katz and Adam F. Fanaki

The 2014 federal budget includes a proposal to address concerns about what many Canadians regard as an “unjustified” price gap between U.S. and Canadian pricing for the same goods. While precise details are not yet available, the plan is to empower Canada’s Commissioner of Competition to enforce new rules against companies with “market power” that charge higher prices in Canada than in the U.S.

This article identifies the Canadian Senate’s “Canada-USA Price Gap” report published in early 2013, and the 2013 “Speech from the Throne” as precursors to the proposal. It also discusses the fears of increased uncertainty for multinationals that have been expressed in certain quarters.

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