Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) Finalizes Implementation Tools for the Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act (ESTMA)

Posted by Ryan Osing, Partner.

As we’ve reported in a prior post, the ESTMA came into force as of June 1, 2015 and requires entities engaged in the commercial development of oil, gas or minerals that are listed on a stock exchange in Canada or have a prescribed connection to Canada, to annually report payments made to Canadian and foreign governments (including government officials).

After a consultation period, in March 2016 NRCan published final versions of its Guidance, Technical Reporting Specifications and Reporting Template documents, available here (scroll down past the Information Sheets): http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/mining-materials/estma/18192.

The Guidance is intended to help businesses understand the requirements of the ESTMA and provides general information on areas such as who is subject to the legislation, which entities must report payments and what payments should be reported.

The Technical Reporting Specifications set out the required way in which reports are to be presented under the ESTMA, including instructions on how to complete the Reporting Template. These specifications must be followed by businesses that prepare reports under the ESTMA.

Issuers who may be subject to the ESTMA are encouraged to review the Guidance and Technical Reporting Specifications in detail, and to implement internal procedures to record payments subject to the ESTMA for each fiscal year beginning with the issuer’s first fiscal year commencing after June 1, 2015. For example, issuers with a fiscal year-end of December 31, 2015 will need to report payments made during the fiscal year ending December 31, 2016, subject to the requirements of the ESTMA. The report is required to be posted on the issuer’s website and provided to NRCan within 150 days following the issuer’s fiscal year-end. Reports must remain publicly available on the internet for at least five years.

NRCan has also stated that issuers subject to the ESTMA are encouraged to “enrol” online with NRCan as soon as possible and in any event prior to June 30, 2016. The purpose of enrolment is to provide NRCan with relevant information required to facilitate the processing of reports and to ensure issuers receive important notifications and updates from NRCan including potential changes to reporting processes. Information on how to enrol is available here: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/mining-materials/estma/18186.

Please contact us if you have any questions about how the ESTMA may apply to your entity.

 

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