The Supreme Court of Canada on Friday endorsed the creation of a nation-wide securities regulator.
Canada is the only G20 country that does not currently have a national securities regulator.
There have been a number of attempts to make a nationwide regulator in Canada since the 1930s. The Canadian Constitution is structured to give the power to make these types of regulations only to the provinces; the creation of a national securities regulator would unduly take these powers from the provinces.
A 2011 court decision suggested that the initiative proceed in the structure of a cooperative system. This system would set up a framework for a national regulator and allow the provinces to opt-in to the program if they agree with its policies.
In having the ability to decide if they want to participate or not, the Court ruled that the provinces retain the powers granted to them in the Constitution.
Previous “passport regimes” allowed participants in the securities market to have access to the markets of other participating jurisdictions while only dealing with one provincial regulator. The new proposed system would go beyond this by consolidating the provincial regulators that opt-in.