Flaherty's dream of a national securities regulator a victim of 'friendly fire' – Financial Post

Lawrence E. Ritchie

Jul 5, 2021

Last month, the federal Conservative Party and the Bloc Québécois voted against an amendment to Bill C-30 which would have provided the Canadian Securities Transition Office, founded under former Prime Minister Stephen Harper in 2009, with about $120 million in funding.

In a recent article, the Financial Post’s Kevin Carmichael recaps the late Finance Minister Jim Flaherty’s attempts to unite the country’s federal and provincial securities regulators into one body like the Securities Exchange Commission in the United States.

Carmichael spoke with Larry Ritchie, a partner in Osler’s Financial Services Regulatory Group, for comment.

“We muscle our way through collectively and cooperatively,” Larry says regarding the current system of Canada’s several disparate regulators. “It’s a testament to the people on the ground, but it’s costly, time consuming and likely comes at the expense of truly national priorities.”

Larry suggests that while it’s not the most ideal option, in the absence of a national regulator, creating instead a national body to enforce securities laws could be effective in deterring and punishing white-collar crime, as provinces may be more likely to hand off difficult criminal cases than to give up their constitutional power to regulate securities themselves.

Read the full article in the Financial Post.