Important Changes To Business Law Help Ontario Compete In Global Marketplace

    Most Significant Business Law Reforms In 50 Years Set To Come Into Force

    OTTAWA, March 5 /CNW/ - The Ontario government is bringing into force the
most significant reforms to corporate and commercial laws in 50 years to
ensure Ontario companies can continue to compete in the global economy, said
Government Services Minister Gerry Phillips in a speech at the Ottawa Rotary
Club today.
    "Business, investor and shareholder groups told us that Ontario needed to
update its business laws to compete with other jurisdictions in the global
economy," said Phillips. "We listened to their concerns and are delivering
strong, clear laws to ensure Ontario remains attractive to investors and
businesses, and provides better protection for shareholders' investments."
    Bill 152, the Consumer Protection and Service Modernization Act, updated
Ontario's business laws and harmonized them with federal law by making changes
to the Ontario Business Corporations Act, Personal Property Security Act,
Partnerships Act, Corporations Act and the Repair and Storage Liens Act. Once
in force, these changes will:

    -   Improve the legal protections available to shareholders who take
        on the duties of a director
    -   Reduce unnecessary costs for businesses, including measures that
        allow more flexibility to communicate electronically with
    -   Help protect shareholders' investments by improving the ongoing
        requirements for directors to notify a company of changes in their
        conflict of interest
    -   Make businesses more competitive in the global economy by providing
        more avenues to obtain financing and making boards more attractive to
        top talent
    -   Create efficiencies by making Ontario and federal business laws more

    Bill 152 will come into force on August 1, 2007, to give businesses time
to adjust to the new rules.
    "These new changes will enhance our ability to compete internationally,
attract more investment and jobs to Ontario and create a more efficient and
ethical marketplace where business leaders want to do business," said
    Bill 152 is the second of three phases of business law reforms the
government committed to in the 2005 Budget. Phase one, the Securities Transfer
Act (STA) was brought into force in January 2007, to make the process of
transferring securities in Ontario more certain, predictable and efficient,
and to harmonize its laws with the U.S. The STA helps make Ontario a more
attractive place to invest and more competitive in the world economy.
    The ministry is now preparing for the third phase of business law reform.
It will soon be consulting with stakeholders about modernizing Ontario's laws
that govern the not-for-profit sector to better reflect the unique
characteristics and complexity of those organizations.

    Disponible en français


For further information:

For further information: Paul de Zara, Minister's Office, (416) 327-3072
- office, (647) 388-9671 - cell; Ciaran Ganley, Ministry of Government
Services, (416) 325-8659

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