Freeland’s fall economic statement includes commitment to right-to-repair

(Kara Oosterhuis/RealAgriculture)

The federal government plans to move ahead with changes to the Competition Act to support Canadians’ right-to-repair.

This was one of many commitments made in the fall economic statement tabled by Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland on Tuesday afternoon.

The government says it will amend the act “in order to prevent manufacturers from refusing to provide the means of repair of devices and products in an anti-competitive manner.”

Grain Growers of Canada is welcoming the commitment.

“Enabling growers to access essential tools and software for maintaining their equipment, such as tractors and combines, will foster a more equitable landscape between manufacturers and consumers,” says Kyle Larkin, executive director of GGC, in a statement.

GGC says it looks forward to working with the government to ensure right-to-repair policies fully support grain farmers.

A separate private member’s bill, brought forward by BC Liberal MP Wilson Miao, also aims to ensure Canadians have the right to repair items they own. Bill C-244 would amend the Copyright Act “in order to allow the circumvention of a technological protection measure in a computer program if the circumvention is solely for the purpose of the diagnosis, maintenance or repair of a product.”

Miao’s right-to-repair bill received unanimous approval in the House of Commons last month and is currently awaiting second reading in the Senate.

The North American Equipment Dealers Association, which represents over 850 farm equipment dealers across Canada, has spoken out against Bill C-244, saying it would have unintended safety, environmental, and cybersecurity consequences.

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