Canada: Competition Bureau
Canada
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Canada: Competition Bureau

Canada: Competition Bureau

Canada

Canada: from the enforcer

Address: Place du Portage I, 50 Victoria Street, Room C-114, Gatineau, Quebec, K1A 0C9, Canada
Tel: +1 800 348 5358
Fax: +1 819 997 0324
Web: www.competitionbureau.gc.ca

Contacts

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Matthew Boswell
Commissioner of Competition

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Mario Mainville
Executive Director, Corporate Services Branch

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Stéphane Lamoureux
Senior Deputy Commissioner, Cartels and Deceptive Marketing Practices Branch

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Jeanne Pratt
Senior Deputy Commissioner, Mergers and Monopolistic Practices Branch

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Anthony Durocher
Deputy Commissioner, Competition Promotion Branch


Canada: from the enforcer's competition economists

Address: 50 Victoria Street, Gatineau, Quebec, K1A 0C9, Canada
Tel: +1 819 997 4282
Fax: +1 819 997 0324
Web: www.competitionbureau.gc.ca

Contacts

Matthew Boswell
Commissioner of Competition

Jeanne Pratt
Senior Deputy Commissioner, Mergers and Monopolistic Practices Branch

Stéphane Lamoureux
Senior Deputy Commissioner, Cartels and Deceptive Marketing Practices Branch

Anthony Durocher
Deputy Commissioner, Competition Promotion Branch

Ellen Creighton
Assistant Deputy Commissioner, International Affairs Directorate

Questions and answers

How many economists do you employ?

Competition staff generally fill investigative and advocacy roles rather than economist and lawyer roles. The Competition Bureau (Bureau) hires employees from a diverse range of backgrounds, including individuals who have studied in economics and law. Specific information related to employees’ university degrees is no longer tracked. Details on employees’ roles are, however, available and are as follows:

  • 18.5 lawyers (Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC) and the Department of Justice);
  • 153 competition law officers and executives; and
  • eight economists (Economic Analysis Directorate).

Do you have a separate economics unit?

Yes. The Economic Analysis Directorate is composed of staff who often hold PhD degrees in economics.

The Economic Analysis Directorate provides economic support and analysis to the Bureau’s enforcement investigations. The majority of the Economic Analysis Directorate’s analysis is related to merger and civil matter investigations. To obtain a remedy from the Competition Tribunal in these cases, the Bureau must demonstrate that a transaction or conduct would substantially lessen or prevent competition, or adversely affect competition. Typically, the Economic Analysis Directorate’s economic analysis is focused on issues such as identifying economic theories of harm, defining relevant product and geographic markets, quantifying competitive effects and evaluating barriers to entry.

Economists in the Economic Analysis Directorate are also involved in criminal investigations or matters involving consumer protection issues. In these cases, economists may assist in the setting of fines, determining the effects of an international cartel in Canada or using behavioural economics to demonstrate potential consumer harm.

In addition to enforcement work, economists in the Economic Analysis Directorate are involved in the Bureau’s advocacy initiatives. This work often involves participating in studies of competition issues in industries of importance to the economy, assessing emerging competition issues and their potential effect on competition enforcement, or participating in regulatory proceedings to make recommendations to regulators or policymakers on the means by which they could undertake to improve competition.

Do you have a chief economist?

The Bureau’s chief economist holds the TD MacDonald Chair in Industrial Economics. The chief economist provides the Bureau with advice on economic matters relating to competition policy and participates in the economic analysis of significant Bureau enforcement and advocacy matters. The position of chief economist is currently vacant.

To whom does the chief economist report?

The chief economist reports to the Commissioner.

Does the chief economist have the power to hire his or her own staff?

The chief economist does not have the power to hire his or her own staff. The chief economist consults with the associate deputy commissioner of the Economic Analysis Directorate for his or her staffing and resource needs.

How many of your economists have a PhD in industrial economics?

Four of the eight economists within the Economic Analysis Directorate have PhDs.

Does the agency include a specialist economist on every case team? If not, why not?

No. In addition to working on advocacy initiatives and consumer protection issues, Economists in the Economic Analysis Directorate are typically involved in investigations that require the Bureau to demonstrate that the business conduct under review has, or is likely to have, an impact on competition (eg, civil reviewable matters, criminal matters and mergers). Furthermore, these economists typically do not become involved in investigations where, at the outset, Bureau investigating officers find little reason to believe that the business conduct could result in or is resulting in a competitive concern. However, a large number of competition law officers with graduate-level economics degrees are employed by the Bureau’s enforcement branches. These competition law officers are typically involved as team leaders or primary officers in most investigations.

Is the economics unit a ‘second pair of eyes’ during cases – is it one of the agency’s checks and balances? If not, why not?

Yes, the Economic Analysis Directorate is often involved in the analysis of complex files. The economists work alongside the investigative team, and their views are an important factor in major decisions. Additionally, the TD MacDonald Chair provides independent advice directly to the Commissioner and senior executives.

How much economics work is outsourced? What type of work is outsourced?

The Bureau frequently hires an external expert on matters where it appears likely there could be material competition issues requiring specific expertise, testimony in front of a court, or both. With respect to the balancing test under section 96, the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in Tervita Corp v Canada (Commissioner of Competition) has increased the need to quantify anticompetitive harm (dead weight loss) and any merger-specific efficiencies claimed by the merging parties. For this reason, the Bureau regularly consults with experts in the fields of economics, accounting, and business valuation.

 

Organisation chart

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