Regulators in Nova Scotia are planning amendments to harmonize the requirements of its offering memorandum (OM) exemption with those of certain other provinces with the goal of making it easier for companies to raise capital in the exempt market, and to increase opportunities for investors.

The Nova Scotia Securities Commission (NSSC) has proposed amendments that will harmonize its OM exemption requirements with the requirements of several other jurisdictions. The regulator says that this step will reduce the compliance burden for issuers while maintaining investor protection.

“Harmonized offering memorandum rules will benefit Nova Scotia issuers by increasing the number of jurisdictions where an offering can be made to raise capital without materially increasing their compliance burden and costs,” it says in a notice.

The NSSC also points out that if it did not harmonize its OM exemption with the other jurisdictions, many issuers may simply not offer their securities in the province to avoid the added cost of complying with its regime. “While these changes may impose new conditions on the use of the offering memorandum exemption in Nova Scotia the resulting harmonization will decrease the complexity and likely increase its use in the Canadian exempt market,” it says.

For investors, the NSSC says that it believes that they will also benefit as it will enable them to participate in a greater number of offerings from other jurisdictions.

The specific amendments have not been formally drafted, but the commission is seeking comments on the concept on harmonizing the exemption by July 6.