On June 22, 2009, the Minister of Finance, the Hon. Jim Flaherty, announced the launch of the Transition Office with the mandate to ensure an effective transition to a Canadian securities regulator. The Transition Office will lead and manage all aspects of the transition, including developing a federal Securities Act, collaborating with provinces and territories, and developing a transition plan to address organizational and administrative matters. The Transition Office will commence operations on July 13, 2009 and, in consultation with an Advisory Committee of participating provinces and territories, is expected to deliver a transition plan within one year, which will require the approval of the governments of such provinces and territories.
Doug Hyndman, Chair of the British Columbia Securities Commission, will serve on a full-time basis as Chair and Chief Executive Officer of the Transition Office and Bryan Davies, Chair of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation, will be Vice-Chair (a part-time position). Both will also serve on the Advisory Committee. The other members of the Advisory Committee will be announced at a future date.
Following approval of the transition plan, the Transition Office will be responsible for ensuring the transition between the Transition Office and the Canadian securities regulator, including reducing overlap, developing policies in respect of the adoption of rules and efficiently transferring human, physical and information resources.
The establishment of a Canadian securities regulator is an important part of Canada's Economic Action Plan (Budget 2009). Minister Flaherty has stated that "with the leadership of the Transition Office, the Canadian securities regulator will enable Canada to respond swiftly and efficiently to developments in the financial sector and speak with one voice internationally. It will also provide clearer national accountability, strengthen enforcement, better serve the needs of investors, and eliminate barriers within our own country".
The Canadian Securities Regulation Regime Transition Office Act was included in the Budget Implementation Act, 2009. The Act provides the legal authority and mandate for the Transition Office. The Budget Implementation Act, 2009 also includes authority for the Minister of Finance to make direct payments (in an aggregate amount not exceeding $150 million) to provinces and territories for matters relating to the establishment of a Canadian securities regulation regime and a Canadian regulatory authority.