Gasoline prices: Illegal activity versus normal competition — How you can help

We take reports of price-fixing or anti-competitive behaviour seriously and we review them carefully. Consumers can and have played a valuable role in helping us gather evidence to uncover price-fixing or other anti-competitive behaviour.

If you answer “yes” to any of the following three questions, you can help the Bureau uncover potential anti-competitive behaviour in the retail gasoline market.

1. Do you have information (evidence) that gas stations where you live have agreed to set prices?

If you have heard of, or have information regarding, any company or gas station agreeing to set prices, call us at 1-800-343-5358 or contact us online.

Before contacting us, remember the mere fact of prices moving in unison is not proof of price-fixing. In fact, there may be valid market forces causing gas prices in a given area to be similar. It is not illegal for gas stations to charge the same or similar prices as long as the station owners or operators have not agreed to do so.

2. Do you work in the gasoline industry and suspect that your employer has an illegal agreement with its competitors?

If you tell us that you suspect your employer has agreed to set retail gas (or any) prices with competitors, you can ask us to keep your identity secret. Under the Competition Act, it is a criminal offence for employers to discipline or threaten to discipline employees who have provided us with information. This means you cannot be fired, disciplined, or harassed by your employer for giving us information.

3. Are you involved in an illegal agreement?

If you come forward with information about an illegal agreement that you are involved in and you help our investigation and any resulting prosecution, you may receive immunity or favourable treatment (leniency) in exchange for your full cooperation.

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