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Rogers-Shaw Merger | The Federal Court of Appeal will hold a hearing on January 24



(OTTAWA) The Federal Court of Appeal will hear on January 24 the Competition Bureau’s appeal of a decision that paved the way for the takeover of Shaw Communications by Rogers Communication.

The Competition Bureau is appealing the Competition Tribunal’s decision to dismiss its efforts to block the $26 billion deal, arguing that the tribunal made fundamental errors of law.

The Competition Bureau already obtained an emergency interim stay on Monday to suspend the agreement until the Federal Court of Appeal hears its case.

Jonathan Lisus, a lawyer representing Rogers, said a formal order for the hearing date would be released on Wednesday, but the competition commissioner would have to submit his case by January 13, while the companies will have until January 17. January to answer.

Rogers and Shaw have been pushing for the appeal to go through an expedited appeals process, as they continue to seek to close the deal before the already extended January 31 deadline.

The two companies indicated in their submission that if the deal were to extend beyond that date, there would be a “real risk that the transaction will not be concluded in its current form, or ever”.

In its decision last week, the court said the merger is unlikely to result in higher prices for wireless customers and that it was satisfied that Freedom Mobile’s plan to sell Videotron to Videotron was sufficient to ensure that competition is not significantly reduced.

In a joint statement on Friday, Rogers and Shaw noted their deep disappointment with the Competition Bureau’s efforts to block the deal, but added they remained committed to seeing it through.

The Competition Bureau argued that merging the two telecom companies would reduce competition, trigger price hikes and lead to deterioration of service.

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