Staff of the Canadian Securities Administrators have been signalling for some time their goal to have proposed National Instrument 31-103 Registration Requirements come into force by March 31, 2009. We understand that the CSA now expects this effective date to be delayed until mid-September 2009, due to the timing of the legislative amendments that are necessary in Ontario and Quebec before the OSC and the AMF can finalize the rule. This means, with the transition periods proposed, that compliance with the new regime would take place during 2010, although certain of the new rules would be effective immediately.
While other CSA members may be in a position to implement the rule earlier than mid-September 2009, it is unlikely that this will happen, given the extreme disruption that would result from a staggered implementation across the Canadian provinces and territories.
We expect that the CSA will make changes to the various instruments in response to the over 200 comment letters received during this most recent comment period. However, the CSA have not yet indicated whether the changes will be of such a material nature that the instruments will need to be published for another comment period under provincial securities legislation.
We note that IIROC currently has out for comment, proposed amendments to its rules to make them consistent with the objectives of National Instrument 31-103. The comment period for these proposed amendments ends on December 29, 2008.
The comment periods for the IIROC and MFDA rule proposals relating to the client relationship model ended earlier this year and we understand both SROs are reviewing the comments received with a view to ensuring consistency.