Canada proceeding with common securities regulator

Fri Jan 16, 2009 5:02pm EST
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper pledged on Friday to proceed on a voluntary basis with a common securities regulator, an idea that has met with fierce opposition from some of the country's provinces.

After a meeting with the provincial and territorial premiers, Harper's office stated: "The prime minister ... informed his counterparts that the government of Canada will move forward with a common securities regulator on a voluntary basis that respects constitutional jurisdiction, regional interests and expertise."

A federally appointed commission this week recommended a common regulator to replace a current patchwork of regulators in each of the 13 provinces and territories but some provinces are unwilling to cede their power.

(Reporting by Randall Palmer; editing by Jeffrey Hodgson)