Securities CSA

Calgary – The Canadian Securities Administrators' (CSA) Uniform Securities Transfer Act Task Force has released for public comment a revised consultative draft of a proposed provincial Uniform Securities Transfer Act (USTA).

The USTA project is unrelated to the CSA's Uniform Securities Legislation project. The proposed USTA is not securities regulatory law, but is commercial property-transfer law, governing the transfer and holding of securities and interests in securities. The USTA requires conforming amendments to the common-law provincial Personal Property Security Acts that govern the use of securities as loan collateral. It also replaces securities settlement rules currently contained in provincial Business Corporations Acts.

Current Canadian law in this area needs to be modernized to deal with current securities market practices, particularly the holding and trading of securities through multiple tiers of intermediaries. Implementation of the USTA will provide a sound legal foundation for existing practices and support the continuing evolution of market practices in the future. It is essential that Canadian legislation in this area be uniform within Canada and harmonized with existing similar legislation in the United States.

“Securities market participants and Canadian financial services industries as a whole urgently need uniform legislation like the USTA to improve the efficiency and legal soundness of the Canadian securities settlement system,” said Stephen Sibold, Chair of the CSA and of the Alberta Securities Commission. “The Canadian securities settlement system handles an enormous quantity and value of transactions on a daily basis. Issuers, investors and financial institutions rely heavily on this system. It is vital to the continued growth and evolution of the Canadian capital markets -- and to their competitiveness with international markets -- that the system be supported by a modern legal foundation that produces predictable results, especially in situations involving cross-border transactions.”

The Task Force welcomes comments until July 30, 2004 on any aspect of the draft USTA and related material, and most specifically on the issues summarized in the Consultation Paper (under Part 3, B.). The proposed USTA is available on the web site of the Ontario Securities Commission at www.osc.gov.on.ca and the web site of the Alberta Securities Commission at www.albertasecurities.com.

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Media relations contacts:

Joni Delaurier :
Alberta Securities Commission
403-297-4481
www.albertasecurities.com
Eric Pelletier :
Ontario Securities Commission
416-595-8913
www.osc.gov.on.ca