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A worker affixes a road sign to the intersection of Bay Street and Adelaide Street in the financial sector of Toronto on July 14, 2014.Chris Helgren/Reuters

Canada's new securities regulator is facing another delay on the bumpy road to its launch in 2015.

The group of participating provinces announced Friday that the regulations to outline the operating details of the new Cooperative Capital Markets Regulator will now be delayed until early spring and will not be out by Dec. 19, as previously anticipated.

The new regulations will substantially copy the existing harmonized rules that are currently in place today, the announcement added, rather than contain a full set of new purpose-made rules for the new regulator.

As a result, the new rules will include existing national and multilateral instruments, and will propose changes to existing rules only to the extent necessary to make them fit under the new Capital Markets Act legislation or to harmonize differences that now exist between provinces.

Securities lawyer Larry Ritchie, who previously worked on the transition team that created the new regulator, said the announcement will reassure market participants that there will not be wholesale change in the regulatory environment.

"This should give the market comfort that there won't be substantive change and that the new regulatory regime will be similar to what exists now," Mr. Ritchie said Monday.

Five provinces have agreed to join forces with the federal government to create a securities regulator to oversee investing and capital markets in their jurisdictions. The participants are British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Ontario, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

The delay in the regulations comes as the provinces continue their work to finish legislation to create the new regulator, which was an earlier step in the process that has also faced delays.

The new Capital Markets Act, which provides the broader legal framework for the new regulator, was delayed earlier this year and was finally released Sept. 8 with public comments initially due by Nov. 7. That deadline was later extended until Dec. 8 to give market participants more time to prepare submissions.

The detailed regulations are the next step in the process, and will outline the rules that will govern the markets.

With those regulations now delayed until the spring, it is unclear whether participating provinces will meet their deadline to have the legislation enacted by June 30. The plan has been to have the regulator launched by next fall.

British Columbia Premier Christy Clark said Monday that she hopes there will be no delay to the project, arguing it is "great for the country" to have a common regulator.

"We're not a big country, and we seem to focus more on our differences than the things that we share in common, and I think that we should be doing everything we can to build together to create commonalities across the country," she said during a Globe and Mail editorial board meeting.

"It fits into my view that we should have free trade and similar regulations across all the country. So I hope it gets done sooner rather than later. I hope it gets finished and they can put a bow on it."

Ms. Clark said she believes more provinces will be persuaded to join once the regulator is operational.

"I think all of the other provinces are going to see the benefit of it after it gets up and running – I think it's going to have too much momentum to stop."

Mr. Ritchie said many of the comments coming from the business community on the proposed legislation are stressing a desire not to face excessive new regulations that will create a burden for market participants. As a result, he said it is "positive news" that the provinces are proposing little change to existing regulations.

"What they're working on is harmonizing as much as they can between B.C., Ontario and the other jurisdictions, and identifying where there are changes necessary to reach a consensus on harmony," he said.

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