The Federal Court of Appeal has rejected the Competition Bureau’s appeal against Rogers’ takeover of Shaw and Vidéotron’s acquisition of Freedom Mobile.
The bureau’s appeal stems from the Competition Tribunal’s decision to support the mergers.
Justice David Stratas delivered the ruling after a lengthy break where he conferred the outcome. The bureau presented its arguments earlier in the morning. Legal representatives from Rogers, Shaw and Vidéotron didn’t present their arguments.
The bureau argued the Competition Tribunal errored in its decision by backing the telecom companies, stating the tribunal should have examined Rogers’ merger with Shaw and not Vidéotron’s takeover of Freedom Mobile. However, the tribunal said it would have reached its decision either way.
Justice Stratas agreed with the tribunal. In his lengthy reasoning, he said he could not be persuaded that the result would be different and it would be pointless to have the Competition Tribunal examine this again.
Update 01/27/2023 9:55am ET: In a statement, Rogers, Shaw and Québecor said the following regarding the dismissal:
“We welcome this clear, unequivocal, and unanimous decision by the Federal Court of Appeal. We continue to work with Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada to secure the final approval needed to close the pro-competitive transactions and create a stronger fourth wireless carrier in Canada and a more formidable wireline competitor.”
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