More provinces join push for Canada securities regulator -report

Tue Jul 8, 2014 7:17pm EDT
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TORONTO, July 8 (Reuters) - The Canadian provinces of Saskatchewan and New Brunswick will join the push for a national securities regulator, doubling the number of provinces in favor of reforming the country's current patchwork system, the Globe and Mail reported on Tuesday.

The two provinces will add their names to the Cooperative Capital Markets Regulator on Wednesday, the Globe said, citing unnamed sources. They will join Ontario and British Columbia in supporting the plan.

A spokeswoman for Saskatchewan's securities regulator would not comment on the report, but said the province's finance minister would participate in an announcement by federal Finance Minister Joe Oliver on Wednesday. A spokesman for New Brunswick's finance ministry was not immediately available for comment.

Regulation of financial markets in Canada is a provincial, not a federal responsibility.

Last September, after decades of failed attempts to get all 10 provinces to agree to a national regulator, Ottawa and the governments Ontario and B.C. announced they would go it alone and set up a common capital markets watchdog, similar to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The hope was that more provinces would join over time and that the current patchwork system of regulators in each province and territory would be replaced with a national system.

Ontario is Canada's most populous province and home to Canada's financial services industry and largest stock market. British Colombia is home to a large number of the country's mining companies.

While Saskatchewan and New Brunswick are much smaller, their support would represent a visible sign of progress.

Quebec and Alberta, which is home to Canada's oil sands, have been the most significant opponents of the plan. (Reporting by Cameron French. Editing by Andre Grenon)