On November 7, 2017, Charles Sousa, Minister of Finance for Ontario, delivered a speech to the Toronto Region Board of Trade, in which he mapped out the Government's strategy for the financial technology (FinTech) sector in the Province.

The Minister stated the Government would create a "regulatory super sandbox", consisting of new rules exempting certain companies from some requirements, to facilitate experimentation with new business models and products. To complement this "super sandbox", the Minister announced the Province will launch the Ontario FinTech Accelerator Office, a new agency that will help FinTech startups get established.

Ontario has become a FinTech centre, and the announced strategy is part of the Province's ongoing efforts to grow this increasingly important sector. For instance, the Minister's announcement comes one year after the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) founded the "LaunchPad" FinTech accelerator (LaunchPad). LaunchPad is a division of the OSC that engages FinTech businesses, helps them navigate regulatory requirements, and strives to keep regulation in step with digital innovation. The announced changes mirror those taken by regulators in other jurisdictions, such as the UK and Australia, and reflect the international scope of the opportunities in this sector.

This new nimble approach to financial regulation is designed to allow companies to test new financial products and encourage innovation within a legislative environment which has not yet caught up to the possibilities of the new economy.

We are following the continuing developments in this important area.

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