If you’re not a specific sort of tech and business nerd, you might not have noticed a surprising amount of chatter about open banking recently.
Open Banking is a framework that enables banks and other financial service providers to seamlessly share customer banking and transaction data through the use of APIs, if the end customer consents to it. This is a major shift away from the traditional banking model, as it empowers individuals and businesses to securely and efficiently share their financial information with authorized third-party providers. With customers in more control of their financial data, this creates opportunities for new and innovative services to be built by new entrants, increasing competition and consumer choice in Canada's financial sector.
Open Banking regimes have been implemented in advanced economies around the world, including the UK, European Union, and the United States. Fundamentally, open banking seeks to empower consumers, drive innovation, reduce fees, better protect data, and enhance the accessibility of financial services for businesses.
During the 2021 federal election, the Liberal Party promised to enact regulations to create a system of open banking in Canada. They promised to get it done by the beginning of 2023, but as we near the end of the calendar year, we're concerned the Liberal's may be quietly abandoning their promise.
There's actually been a surprising amount of public chatter about open banking lately.
More recently, when the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced a roadmap to adopt an open banking model decoupled from the big banks, south of the border.
The campaign we're launching today – Canadians for Open Banking – is not just about getting the government to fulfill an election promise. It's about increasing consumer control, security and choice in Canada's financial services sector. It's time for the government to heed this call to action, prioritize economic growth, and embrace open banking as a catalyst for a more competitive and innovative Canada.
Today, dozens of business and public policy leaders have signed their name to our open letter to Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, calling on her to reaffirm her government's promise to enact open banking, and lay out a clear path forward.
You can read the full letter at CanadiansForOpenBanking.ca, and if you’re a business or community leader who cares about this issue, sign your name and help us send a message to the government that we need to see action on this file.