The Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) is contemplating rule changes that would allow investment dealer representatives to use personal corporations and allow firms to employ reps whose business is limited to trading mutual funds and exchange-traded funds.

IIROC on Wednesday issued a white paper that proposes possible rule changes to allow firms and reps to operate businesses that are limited to mutual funds and ETFs, but under IIROC’s oversight. The self-regulatory organization is putting forth the idea as a way to make securities regulation more efficient by reducing regulatory overlaps and harmonizing its requirements and standards with those of the Mutual Funds Dealers Association of Canada.

Under the proposed approach, IIROC would eliminate its current requirement for firms and reps to be qualified to offer a full range of investment products. Instead, it would allow firms to have reps that only deal in mutual funds and ETFs with “appropriate adjustments for the relative risk of such firms and individuals to IIROC’s proficiency, supervisory and oversight requirements,” the white paper says.

The proposed approach would also allow all IIROC reps to direct their commissions through a personal corporation, as mutual fund reps are allowed to do.

Given the magnitude of the possible changes and their potential impact on the investment industry, these proposals are out for a prolonged comment period, until Mar. 31, 2016.

There will also be “an extensive consultative process to consider the initiatives” set out in the paper. “This white paper raises many complex and inter-related elements that have broad policy implications and will require extensive policy discussions,” the white paper says.

The white paper indicates that IIROC has not consulted with the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) in developing its proposal, “nor has the CSA expressed any view concerning whether or not any element of the proposal has merit, or whether or not it is in the public interest either in the short or long term.”