COVID-19: BCSC Response

At the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC), we remain committed to protecting investors and the integrity of the investment markets. We are closely monitoring COVID-19 developments and continue to collaborate closely with the Canadian Securities Administrators, the national umbrella group of securities regulators, to coordinate market regulation. We continue to provide market participants and the public with information about regulatory developments related to COVID-19 and to answer any questions that arise from market disruptions caused by the outbreak. This page will be updated as the situation, and our approach to it, evolves.

The health and safety of our employees and those we come in contact with is paramount. Following the recommended guidance and protocols from government health officials, we are returning to the office on a gradual basis. Our regulatory functions continue unaffected and stakeholders can continue to reach us through the usual email or phone numbers. Reception service continues 8am – 5pm, Monday to Friday with a one hour closure between noon and 1 pm daily.

News Releases

  • News release 2020/76 - Total market value of B.C.’s publicly listed companies grows after initial impact of COVID-19
  • News release 2020/59 - New video to raise awareness about World Elder Abuse Awareness Day in light of COVID-19
  • News release 2020/50 - Temporary relief from certain regulatory filings available to registrants and unregistered capital markets participants due to COVID-19
  • News release 2020/49 - BCSC issues halt trade order on Micron Waste Technologies
  • News release 2020/44 - Temporary relief from certain regulatory filings available to investment funds and non-investment fund issuers due to COVID-19
  • News release 2020/39 - Canadian securities regulators provide temporary relief to public companies with delayed annual meetings due to COVID-19
  • News release 2020/38 - Canadian Securities regulators warn public about entity claiming to regulate derivatives
  • News release 2020/36 - Canadian securities regulators temporarily increase short-term borrowing limits for mutual funds investing in fixed income
  • News release 2020/35 - Canadian securities administrators provide update on syndicated mortgage regime
  • News release 2020/34 - Canadian securities administrators adjust implementation date for client focused reforms
  • News release 2020/32 - Joint statement by Canadian Securities Administrators and Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada on recent volatility in Canadian equity markets
  • News release 2020/31 - Canadian securities regulators provide update on changes to regulatory work in light of COVID-19
  • News release 2020/27 - Capital Markets including all dealers and advisers declared essential services during COVID-19 pandemic
  • News release 2020/25 - Canadian securities regulators publish blanket relief for market participants due to COVID-19
  • News release 2020/24 - Canadian securities regulators provide guidance on conducting Annual General Meetings during COVID-19 outbreak
  • News release 2020/22 - Canadian securities regulators to provide blanket relief for market participants due to COVID-19

Regulatory Relief and Guidance

For issuers, other than investment funds:

  • COVID-19: Continuous Disclosure Obligations and Considerations for Issuers
  • 51-515 - Temporary Exemption from Certain Corporate Finance Requirements [BCI]
  • 51-516 - Temporary Exemptions from Certain Requirements to File or Send Securityholder Materials [BCI]
  • 51-517 - Temporary Exemption from Certain Corporate Finance Requirements with Deadlines during the Period from June 2 to August 31, 2020 [BCI]
  • 51-360 - Frequently asked questions regarding filing extension relief granted by way of a blanket order in response to COVID-19 (Updated) [CSA Staff Notice]

For investment funds:

  • 81-519 - Extension of Certain Filing, Sending, Delivering and Prospectus Renewal Requirements of Investment Funds [BCI]
  • 81-520 - Temporary Variation from Borrowing Limit to Accommodate Redemption Requests of Mutual Funds Investing in Fixed Income Securities [BCI]
  • 81-521 - Extension of Certain Filing, Sending, Delivering and Prospectus Renewal Requirements of Investment Funds with Deadlines during the Period from June 2 to September 30, 2020 [BCI]

For registrants:

  • 32-526 - Temporary Exemption from Certain Financial Statement and Information Delivery Requirements for Registrants [BCI]
  • 32-527 - Temporary Exemption from Certain Financial Statement and Information Delivery Requirements for Registrants with Deadlines during the Period from June 2 to September 30, 2020 [BCI]
  • 31-357 - Blanket Orders/Class Orders in respect of Certain Client Focused Reforms Provisions of National Instrument 31-103 Registration Requirements, Exemptions and Ongoing Registrant Obligations [CSA Notice]

For other regulated entities (including designated rating organizations):

  • 21-505 - Temporary Exemption from Certain Reporting Requirements for Regulated Entities Carrying On Business in British Columbia [BCI]
  • 51-515 - Temporary Exemption from Certain Corporate Finance Requirements [BCI] 

Information for Investors

BCSC Hearings

Given the current circumstances involving COVID-19, the BCSC has adopted the Commission Tribunal COVID-19 Procedures and Guidelines. These procedures ensure that the BCSC is capable of holding in-person hearings that comply with provincial guidelines relating to COVID-19. The Hearing Office will provide the COVID-19 Procedures and Guidelines to parties with scheduled hearings.

Further:

  •  the BCSC has implemented new procedures relating to Remote Hearings at the Commission, that address participating in hearings remotely
  • panels presiding over current hearings before the Commission will adopt the direction provided by the Supreme Court of British Columbia for commissioning affidavits in civil proceedings where it is not possible, or medically unsafe, for the deponent of an affidavit to physically attend before a commissioner. That direction can be found here:

    Supreme Court of British Columbia – Affidavits for use in Civil Proceedings

The Hearing Office updates the hearing schedule daily, including the current status of each hearing, and will provide additional updates as information is made available.

Contact Us

The public can contact us through our Inquiries Office and can file a complaint or report to us here. We ask for callers’ patience as there may be minor delays in answering calls. You can also leave us a message and we will respond as soon as possible.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or concerns.