Regulatory fees for Ontario’s provincially regulated financial institutions will be rising for the coming years as regulatory budgets project higher costs.
The Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) said that its budget for fiscal 2021-2022 is $103.9 million, which is an increase of $2.1 million from the previous year.
FSRA said the budget hike “includes investments in regulatory enhancements and increased conduct supervision, regulatory effectiveness, digital transformation and facilities,” which will be somewhat offset by internal efficiency improvements.
The provincial regulator’s revenues are also projected to increase by $700,000 compared with last year’s budget.
“Fee assessments in variable fee sectors will increase by 1.0%,” FSRA said.
For 2022-2023, the agency’s plan indicates expenses will rise by $2.6 million, driven largely by higher salary and benefits, including new hires to oversee life agents and managing general agencies.
In 2023-2024, expenses are forecast to be $3.4 million higher than the 2022-2023 plan, again driven by hiring to boost supervisory capacity.
FSRA said its priorities over the next three years will include improving its supervisory capabilities, protecting consumers and contributing to public confidence, among other initiatives.
For the life insurance sector specifically, the regulator said its priority includes enhancing market conduct oversight. For advisors generally, adopting rules to regulate the use of titles remains a top priority.