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Competition Tribunal decision reinforces need for Senator Ringuette’s Bill S-215



Statement by Senator Pierrette Ringuette on the decision by the Competition Tribunal regarding a complaint filed against VISA and MasterCard;


“Today, the Competition dismissed an application by the Competition Commissioner regarding the rules VISA and MasterCard impose on Canadian merchants. I find it very unfortunate that the tribunal was unable to address these serious issues, but I understand that they are limited by the scope of the Competition Act.


I found it quite interesting that in the summary of their decision the Tribunal notes that the proper solution to these concerns is through a regulatory framework.


This only reinforces what I have been saying for the last 4 years and I have tried repeatedly to get this government to support legislation to regulate credit card fees.


Prime Minster Harper, Minster Flaherty, and the rest of the Conservative government have shown no interest or concern about the over $5 billion in excessive interchange fees that hit Canadians every year.


We all end up paying for high-end card rewards regardless of our own method of payment and VISA and MasterCard continue to up the ante and increase profits while the costs are pushed onto struggling Canadian merchants and consumers.


Last year, I introduced Bill S-215. This bill will enable the government to regulate excessive interchange fees, as had been done years ago in places like Australia, New Zealand, and parts of Europe.


Considering the resulting decision of the Tribunal and the calls for a regulatory framework, I feel my bill has become even more important and we must pass it.


To Prime Minster Harper, Minister Flaherty, and the governing Conservative party, I say; how long will we have to wait for action? How many more years will Canadians have to settle for an ineffective voluntary codes of conduct?  It’s time to take a stand for our merchants and consumers and support my bill.”



For more information:


Tim Rosenburgh

Office of Senator Pierrette Ringuette

(613) 943-2248