February 22nd, 2018

Securities regulators affirm disclosure policy for pot companies with U.S. ties

By The Canadian Press on February 8, 2018.

Medical marijuana is shown in Toronto, November 5, 2017. Canada's umbrella group for securities administrators says after a review of a U.S. clampdown on marijuana policies it will continue to allow cannabis companies with U.S. ties to trade on the country's exchanges as long as they disclose specific risks. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy

TORONTO – Canada’s umbrella group for securities administrators says after a review of a U.S. clampdown on marijuana policies it will continue to allow cannabis companies with U.S. ties to trade on the country’s exchanges as long as they disclose specific risks.

The Canadian Securities Administrators says in a statement that “a disclosure-based approach remains appropriate in the current circumstances.”

It posted additional disclosure expectations for companies with U.S. marijuana-related activities, including transparency about whether the company obtained legal advice about compliance with applicable American laws.

Last month, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded an Obama-era memo that suggested the federal government would not intervene in states where cannabis is legal, leaving the door open for legalization in several states including California and Florida.

Instead, Sessions said he was leaving it to federal prosecutors in those states to decide how aggressively to enforce federal law.

His rescission prompted the umbrella organization for Canada’s provincial and territorial securities regulators to take another look at its disclosure-based approach for issuers with U.S. marijuana-related activities, and whether it “remains appropriate.”

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