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Highlights from the OSC Corporate Finance Branch’s Annual Report

October 16, 2017

The Corporate Finance Branch of the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) recently published OSC Staff Notice 51-728 Corporate Finance Branch 2016-2017 Annual Report (Report), which outlines the policy views of, and related guidance from, the OSC on a number of issues that arose during its annual continuous disclosure review program and ongoing review of offering documents and exemptive relief applications. The…

International Competition Network Addresses Bid-Rigging in Government Procurement

October 16, 2017

In October 2017, Canada’s Commissioner of Competition John Pecman (Commissioner) joined competition law enforcement authorities from around the world in Ottawa for the International Competition Network’s (ICN) 14th annual Cartel Workshop, which focused on “combating cartels in public procurement”. The Cartel Workshop involved 27 sessions addressing bid-rigging issues such as detection in public versus private procurement, screening public procurement data…

Quebec Introduces Much Anticipated Bill 141 to Revise Framework for Quebec Financial Sector

October 10, 2017

On October 5, 2017, Quebec’s Minister of Finance Carlos Leitão (Minister) introduced Bill 141, An Act mainly to improve the regulation of the financial sector, the protection of deposits of money and the operation of financial institutions (Bill) in the National Assembly, a much anticipated omnibus bill that is meant to improve the framework of Quebec’s financial sector and strengthen…

Cannabis M&A: Overview of Strategies for Buying or Selling a Business

October 10, 2017

As Canada gears up to legalize cannabis for recreational use (expected by July 2018), companies operating in the sector and those in ancillary markets are looking to raise capital to fund their business plans and expected expansions, some with an eye on opportunities to raise public capital for growth through acquisition. A significant milestone for many companies in a growth…

Grass-Roots Lobbying Interpretation Updated, New Restrictions Proposed for Former Public Office Holders in B.C.

October 6, 2017

Lobbying law in Canada is constantly evolving, with new developments occurring monthly. Two such recent developments include the release of an updated interpretation bulletin by the Commissioner of Lobbying of Canada (Commissioner) on grass-roots lobbying in Canada and a proposed prohibition on lobbying by former public office holders in British Columbia. COMMISSIONER’S INTERPRETATION OF GRASS-ROOTS LOBBYING IN CANADA The Commissioner…

Alberta Unveils Cannabis Distribution Plans

October 5, 2017

On October 4, 2017, the Government of Alberta (Province) released its proposed Alberta Cannabis Framework (Framework). The Framework is based on the Province’s four policy priorities: keeping cannabis away from children; protecting public health; promoting safety on roads, in workplaces and in public spaces; and limiting the illegal market for cannabis. Although the Framework does not conclusively settle the issue…

Canada Looks to Boost Can-Con Presence in the Digital World Through Funding, Legislative Reform

October 5, 2017

On September 28, 2017, the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, delivered a long-awaited speech on the future of Canadian cultural and creative industries. Together with a policy framework document published concurrently, the speech introduced “Creative Canada”, the federal government’s strategy to support these industries in a rapidly evolving global and digital marketplace. Creative Canada is the result of…

Canadian Economic Sanctions Update: New Sanctions Against Venezuela and Other Developments

October 3, 2017

Two recent developments in the Canadian economic sanctions regime are notable for Canadian financial institutions and businesses engaged in international trade: Canada has imposed new sanctions against Venezuela under the Special Economic Measures Act (SEMA) and removed the export ban it had in place against Belarus since 2006. VENEZUELA SEMA REGULATIONS The SEMA is the federal legislation through which Canada…

Claimants of Aboriginal Title Over Private Lands Not Required to Notify Affected Landowners

September 26, 2017

In two decisions from September 2017, the British Columbia Supreme Court (Court) addressed the issue of whether to require a claimant for aboriginal title to serve formal notice on private registered owners of fee simple lands. In Cowichan Tribes v. Canada (Attorney General) (Cowichan Tribes) and The Council of the Haida Nation v. British Columbia (Council of the Haida Nation),…

Quebec Transfer Duties on Immovables: Recent Developments

September 25, 2017

The Quebec Minister of Finance presented the budget speech for the 2016–2017 financial year on March 17, 2016 (2016–2017 Budget), which modified the system of duties on transfers of immovables (please see our March 2016 Blakes Bulletin: Significant Proposals to Duties on Transfers of Immovables). These amendments were integrated into Bill 112, which was introduced on November 15, 2016, and assented to…

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