CLA Responds to the Competition Bureau’s FinTech Public Consultation

Toronto, Canada, November 20, 2017 – Canadian Lenders Association (CLA) responds to the Competition Bureau’s public consultation regarding: “Technology-led innovation and emerging services in the Canadian financial services sector”

The Canadian Lenders Association (CLA) provides Canadian lenders the tools to innovate and to foster safe and ethical lending practices. As an association that represents business-to-business, the business-to-consumer and peer-to-peer lending sector, we advocate for measures and policies that strengthen protection for borrowers as well as supporting the technology and business processes that are transforming our financing sector.

The CLA continues to provide FinTech standards into the Canadian market. In September 2017, the CLA announced the introduction of the SMART Box™ into Canada – a model pricing disclosure and comparison tool that will enable Canadian small businesses to better assess and compare their finance options.

In response to the Competition Bureau’s public consultation regarding: “Technology-led innovation and emerging services in the Canadian financial services sector”, we encourage the Bureau to consider the following as it relates to its recommendations:


    Regulators should continue their efforts to harmonize regulation: this recommendation is one that the CLA strongly supports. As succinctly summarized by the Bureau’s introductory remarks, Canada’s current legislative landscape is a balance between federal and provincial powers. There is an ongoing need for harmonization at all levels of government to keep barriers to entry low so that new entrants may add to Canada’s competitive landscape. Supporting and contributing to complex regulation at all levels of government will have the effect of keeping smaller players out of the market, as only those players with sufficient scale and scope may build cost-effective compliance models, and thus be able to compete. Harmonization efforts will be important to ensuring that needless regulatory roadblocks are avoided.


      Policymakers should identify a clear and unified FinTech policy lead for Canada with federal, provincial and territorial expertise to facilitate FinTech development: consistent with the point noted above is the requirement for a lead agency or entity to represent Canada’s interests in FinTech development. This will be particularly crucial in providing the required leadership to ensure a single point of regulation. In order to encourage competition between all relevant players in the marketplace, the provision of leadership to streamline the regulatory framework will help bolster innovation by keeping organizations squarely focused on serving consumer needs in the most efficient manner possible.

About the Canadian Lenders Association

The Canadian Lenders Association (CLA) supports the growth of companies in the Canadian market that are in the business of lending, or providing other means of credit, to small businesses and individuals by non-conventional or innovative means to exchange ideas and explore ways of improving the sector;  encourage principled and professional practices by innovative lenders; educate the public at large about innovative lending;  encourage individual potential borrowers to be informed about the appropriateness of innovative lending to the borrowers’ circumstance; and to advocate on behalf of, and represent the interests of innovative lenders.


Gary Schwartz
416 505-7410