Canada competition watchdog reaches airline deal

Associated Press Published: October 24, 2012
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TORONTO (AP) — Canada's competition watchdog says it has reached an agreement with Air Canada and U.S. partner United Continental that will allow them to cooperate on transborder routes while protecting consumers.

Under the agreement, Air Canada and United Continental are prohibited from coordinating their prices and sharing other commercially sensitive information on 14 high-demand transborder routes.

Interim Competition commissioner John Pecman said Wednesday the agreement "will ensure that passengers do not face higher prices and less choice on high-demand routes between Canada and the U.S."

The airlines announced the joint venture in October 2010 but suspended their plans in June 2011 after the competition bureau intervened and raised concerns. The bureau originally identified 19 transborder routes where competition would be substantially reduced.