Canada – In times when some regulators in jurisdictions such as China have signified a clampdown on cryptocurrency-based fundraising, authorities in Canada seem to be towing a different direction.
Quebec’s regulator for financial institutions, the Autorite des marches financiers (AMF) instead of imposing sanctions is seeking to better understand the blockchain use case and possibly encourage it all together. In fact the AMF has gone a step further by determining that a token sale by Impak Finance is a security – Impak Finance is a platform that helps investors to place their fund in socially responsible enterprises. The AMF has also further accepted the company into its regulatory sandbox. They believe it is more prudent to first understand the space properly before enacting regulations instead of just a blanket policy without a proper grasp of the technology and processes.
It is also noteworthy that the AMF is also showing a willingness to be flexible with certain rules in order to accommodate the Impak Finance token sale.
In an interview with CoinDesk, Patrick Theoret a director in AMF’s corporate finance division says the move is the regulator’s best strategy to approaching the new cutting-edge technology;
“It’s in the spirit of the sandbox that we are willing to alleviate some of the requirements on, sort of, a test case basis. It’s a test run to see whether there are investor protection issues with the relief that we grant.”
Going forward, the AMF will be serving as the principal regulator to the token and all Canadian provinces and territories will honor this decision via the Canadian securities passport system.
It was announced earlier this year by the Canadian Securities Administration which is a consortium of provincial securities regulators that the sandbox is meant to jumpstart fintech projects that do not easily fit into the currently legacy framework.
Speaking on the progressive move by the AMF, Paul Allard, President of Impak Finance said “I had been working with the regulators for several years prior to Impak Coin, and I knew that they were keen in adapting their regulatory framework to catch up with the cryptocurrency sector”.
AMF representatives say Impak Coin is serving as a de-facto test case for the ICO space in the country. It is believed that subsequent ICO projects that might come along will likely have similar rules apply to them.