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Canadian Gas Association's Submission in Response to Finance Canada's 2006 Review of Financial Sector Legislation:

Enbridge Gas Distribution
P.O. Box 650
Scarborough, ON
M1K 5E3

Mr. Gerry Salembier
Director, Financial Institutions Division
Financial Sector Policy Branch
Department of Finance
L’Esplanade Laurier
20th Floor, East Tower
140 O’Connor Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0G5

e-mail: finlegis@fin.gc.ca

Re: MODERNIZING CANADA’S PAYMENT SYSTEM THROUGH CHEQUE IMAGING

Dear Mr. Salembier :

I am writing in response to the Government’s invitation, in Annex 6 to its budget documents, for comments on allowing financial institutions to electronically process cheque images in place of paper cheques.

I wish to express to you the support of the Canadian Gas Association (CPA Task Force Branch) for the electronic processing of paper cheques by Canada’s financial institutions.

The CPA Task Force of the Canadian Gas Association is responsible for pursuing modern and efficient payment processing techniques for its Canadian Gas Utility member companies and to work with other stakeholders to promote, through work with the CPA, new and innovative payment methods for its customers nationwide.

In particular, the Canadian Gas Association sees the following benefits flowing out of the cheque imaging project:

  • Our member companies will have quicker and more efficient access to cheque information on-line for the purpose of reconciliations and chegue tracing requirements.
  • Image technology will enable new services that are more convenient and efficient for consumers to access their cancelled cheque information
  • Company reconciliations will be faster and more timely.
  • Faster notification of returned items will reduce the risk of loss of receivables
  • Quick access to images will help in the detection of attempted fraud, such as cheques where the name of the payee or the amount has been altered
  • Improvements in cheque processing by allowing our member companies to create electronic images on behalf of financial institutions and thereby enjoy smoother deposit processing and cost savings
  • Reduced reliance of physical document transport delay and/or loss, especially in times of national disruption of transport services.
  • The potential for other documents (example, bill payment stubs) to be ‘imaged’ and thereby increase the efficiencies and savings already associated with imaged cheques.

In summary, the Canadian Gas Association supports the CPA’s recommendations for amendments to the Bills of Exchange Act to facilitate a modernization of the cheque clearing process.

Yours truly,

Keith F. T. Evans
Manager Billing & Revenue Services
Enbridge

On behalf of: The Canadian Gas Association