As the minister said when he introduced his comments before this committee, this is not a normally functioning market. There are many, many parts of this market that do not work, so to suggest that normal commercial relations are going to prevail in the absence of a framework is, frankly, ridiculous.
When you have a bunch of competitors vying for a service—giving an opportunity to the receiver of that service to choose among them—all of the providers of the service try to be the winner. When you don't have that, when you have either a monopoly or a duopoly, you fall to the lowest level of service that is possible and that is still within the advantage of that supplier.
It's not to say that a monopoly will always provide bad service. That is not the case. In fact, they may provide the very best service. The problem is that we have a market structure that does not give direction to the suppliers of the service as to what they are supposed to do and for the receivers of that service to know what they might expect. There's not a normal negotiation going on. It's not a normally functioning market.
That's the problem we're trying to address. It's not the heavy hand of regulation. It's a way to establish a framework that gives parties on both sides of that negotiation an opportunity to know the things they might get, such as if they are allowed to get service five times a week as opposed to three times a week. It's those kinds of things.
All of those, even within the framework that the government has advanced in Bill C-52, are going to be imposed, so we shouldn't get stuck on the word “imposed”. Ultimately, every single provision is going to be imposed if the arbitrator thinks it makes sense. If that arbitrator doesn't think it makes sense, then it won't be imposed.