New Brunswick is proposing legislative changes that will beef up the authority of industry self-regulatory organizations and enable financial benchmark regulation.
The provincial government is proposing a series of changes to its securities legislation that aim to enhance investor protection and bolster confidence in the capital markets.
The bill, which has passed first reading, proposes changes regarding SROs that would enhance their investigative powers, enable SROs to compel evidence, enable them to enforce orders in court, and provide them with statutory immunity from malicious lawsuits.
The Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) applauded the proposed changes.
“This serves as notice to potential wrongdoers: if you break IIROC’s rules and harm investors in New Brunswick, there will be serious consequences,” said Andrew Kriegler, president and CEO of IIROC, in a release.
IIROC says that the reforms will make New Brunswick the fifth province to provide it with the full set of enforcement powers that it’s seeking throughout the country (along with Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Quebec and Alberta).
Along with the measures involving SROs, the proposed bill also aims to create a regime to regulate financial benchmarks and to ensure consistent application of limitation periods, among other things.
“These legislative changes help to augment the commission’s mandate of investor protection and enhancing public confidence in the capital markets,” said Ernie Steeves, New Brunswick’s minister of finance, in a release.
“The changes will also ensure that New Brunswick has modern, up-to-date legislation, which is harmonized with other jurisdictions across Canada,” he said.