The Competition Bureau Canada is moving toward more inclusive competition law enforcement and promotion. We have been working with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and applying the Government of Canada’s Gender-based Analysis Plus (“GBA+”) tool to understand the link between competition, gender and other intersecting identity factors. These insights will inform our enforcement, advocacy and compliance work going forward. By striving to be inclusive, we can make more informed decisions and better protect and promote competition for consumers and businesses.

By Nadia Vassos & Ellen Creighton1

 

I. INTRODUCTION

Competition law and policy address anti-competitive business activity and promote competition to ensure that consumers and businesses prosper in a competitive marketplace. Competition policy and analysis are often described as “neutral” and objective, considering the actions and behaviors of consumers and businesses. At times, leaders in the field have avoided drawing connections to “social issues,” and pointed to other legislative levers as more appropriate avenues to address broader issues. The view that competition enforcement is “neutral” ignores that consumers and businesses are not homogenous, and that measures to address anti-competitive conduct may have different effects on different groups. It ignores that concentrated economic power can be a reflection of social dynamics and existing structural econo

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