Montréal, November 21, 2013 – The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal, Finance Montréal and the International Financial Centre ‒ Montréal are joining forces to reiterate their staunch opposition to the federal government’s plans to create a new securities regulator, an initiative that is in direct opposition to the economic development of Quebec and Montréal.
“The city’s business community is sending a clear message: we are concerned about the impact of the federal government’s centralizing approach on businesses in Quebec and Montréal,” said Michel Leblanc, President and CEO of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal.
“There is no reason to change the existing passport system, which the Autorité des marchés financiers plays a key role in. This system has proven its worth and illustrates what is best about Canadian federation: healthy cooperation between the provinces, focused on collaboration and innovation in financial market regulation and services to businesses. We ask Minister Flaherty to respect provincial jurisdiction, as reiterated by a 2011 decision of the Supreme Court, and to abandon this attempt ‒ one in a long series ‒ to centralize securities regulation.”
“The financial sector represents close to 160,000 jobs in Quebec and generates 6.2% of Quebec GDP,” said Jean Houde, Chairman of the Board of Finance Montréal. “Plans for a single securities regulator, with its head office in Toronto, undermine Montréal’s role as a financial centre and would diminish the attractive power of the city’s areas of financial specialization. The Montréal Exchange is the only derivatives trading platform in Canada, so it is essential, and simply makes sense, to keep the regulatory framework for derivatives here in Montréal. Plus, the presence of a regulator in Quebec is strategic to maintaining skilled jobs and attracting direct foreign investment to Quebec’s financial industry. The federal government needs to recognize this reality.”
“The current passport system, according to which the provinces and territories have their own securities regulator and cooperate with one other, works very well,” said Jacques Girard, Chairman of the Board of the International Financial Centre – Montréal. “Its effectiveness is recognized worldwide: in 2006, the OECD ranked Canada second in the world for the quality of its securities regulation, and in 2008 the World Bank ranked Canada fifth worldwide for investor protection. Plus, adjustments are constantly being made to the passport system to optimize and adapt it to new market realities. So why change the system? This initiative to create an additional regulator is quite simply unnecessary. This is not a direction we should be headed in.”
About the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal
The Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal is made up of some 7,000 members. Its mission is to represent the interests of the business community of Greater Montréal and to provide individuals, merchants, and local businesses of all sizes with a variety of specialized services to help them achieve their full potential in terms of innovation, productivity, and competitiveness. The Board of Trade is Quebec’s leading private economic development organization.
About Finance Montréal
Finance Montréal, Quebec’s financial cluster, was created in 2010 by major players of the financial services industry at the invitation of the Quebec Government. Finance Montréal’s mission is to continuously expand Montréal’s reputation on the world financial markets, promoting the city as a strong and innovative industrial hub that contributes to Quebec’s economic development. The organization helps strengthen Quebec’s financial sector by generating growth in high value-added financial activities strategic
to its development. A non-profit organization with 22 Governors, 12 Associate Members and close to 100 volunteer professionals, Finance Montréal fosters cooperation among a vast range of financial sector companies to watch over the industry’s common interests while generating higher awareness of the financial specializations found in Montréal.
The International Financial Centre of Montréal (IFC-Montréal) works to develop Montréal a financial hub on the world stage. It advises and helps companies wishing to carry out international financial transactions out of Montréal with respect to IFC tax program eligibility. The team also determines if these companies could benefit from other tax incentives or financing sources, and assists them, through its network of partners, with their administrative matters (immigration, real estate, etc.). IFC-Montréal connects these companies with the many financial institutions already in Montréal.
Finance Montréal and International Finance Centre – Montréal
Tel.: 514 287-1540, ext. 227