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Securities regulators in Alberta and Saskatchewan are making a prospectus exemption that was set to expire next month a permanent feature of those markets.

The Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) and the Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority of Saskatchewan (FCAA) adopted amendments to regulatory orders that allow investors who don’t have the financial resources to qualify as accredited investors to nevertheless claim an exemption based on their financial knowledge.

To qualify for the exemption, which was initially adopted to boost the availability of capital to issuers in Alberta and Saskatchewan, and to expand investment opportunities, investors must self-certify that they meet other criteria intended to demonstrate their financial and investment knowledge.

The kinds of qualifications that investors can rely on to qualify for the exemption include various securities industry designations, undergrad degrees in finance, MBAs, and lawyers with certain financial expertise.

The exemption also carries restrictions designed to limit the risks to investors: it caps investments at $10,000 for a single issuer, and $30,000 across multiple issuers, per year. Those limits don’t apply for exchange-traded companies when the investor has also received advice, confirming that the proposed investment is suitable.

The regulators first adopted the self-certification exemption in March 2021 as a three-year pilot program, which was set to expire April 1.

The amendments adopted Friday remove the expiry date and make some other minor changes to the exemption’s provisions “to align more closely with the accredited investor language on which it is based.”

In the notice, the regulators said they have determined “it is not prejudicial to the public interest” to maintain the exemption.

“The exemption allows purchasers who do not meet the financial thresholds to qualify as an accredited investor, to invest alongside accredited investors, continuing to offer greater flexibility to businesses and investors in Alberta and Saskatchewan,” they said.