The Competition Bureau of the Canadian government is probing Amazon to determine if its behavior on Amazon.ca is affecting competition “to the detriment of consumers and companies that do business in Canada,” according to a Friday (Aug. 14) statement.
“The Bureau’s investigation is ongoing and there is no conclusion of wrongdoing at this time,” the government body said in the statement.
The Bureau noted that more Canadians are shopping via eCommerce. Canadians spent $57.4 billion in eCommerce purchases in 2018, while they spent just $18.9 billion in 2012.
The Bureau said “areas of interest” in its probe include the capability of third-party merchants to be successful on the eCommerce retailer’s marketplace without advertising on the Canadian platform or harnessing Fulfillment by Amazon.
In addition, the Bureau is interested in current or former Amazon procedures that could affect the willingness of third-party merchants to provide merchandise at a lower cost on other channels like digital marketplaces or their own sites.
Furthermore, the Bureau is interested in strategies or efforts by Amazon that could move shoppers to buy merchandise “it offers for sale over those offered by competing sellers.”
The Bureau noted that merchants and businesses can privately share their experiences with it through email.
In early August, news surfaced that New York Attorney General Letitia James was becoming a part of other probes into the market power of Amazon. Her office was teaming with the attorney general of California and the Federal Trade Commission to look into the matter.
And, in August, Rep. David Cicilline (D-Rhode Island) said in closing remarks to a Big Tech hearing, “These companies as they exist today have monopoly power. Some need to be broken up; all need to be properly regulated and held accountable. We need to ensure the antitrust laws, first written more than a century ago, work in the digital age.”
However, as PYMNTS has previously noted, Big Tech companies are in competition aggressively with each other in lieu of functioning in the fashion of monopolies with a specific segment locked up.