No it won't be a superficial loss. The words used in the ITA(54) say
“superficial loss” of a taxpayer means the taxpayer’s loss from the
disposition of a particular property where
(a) during the period that begins 30 days before and ends 30 days
after the disposition, the taxpayer or a person affiliated with the
taxpayer acquires a property (in this definition referred to as the
“substituted property”) that is, or is identical to, the particular
For the interpretation of 'identical' you can read IT 387. They say
¶ 1. "Identical properties", for the purposes of subsection 47(1), the
definition of "superficial loss" in section 54 of the Act and
subsection 26(8) of the ITAR (and subject to the provisions referred
to in ¶ 5 and ¶s 9 to 11), are properties which are the same in all
material respects, so that a prospective buyer would not have a
preference for one as opposed to another. To determine whether
properties are identical, it is necessary to compare the inherent
qualities or elements which give each property its identity. Such a
determination is a question of fact which must be decided on the basis
of the relevant details in each situation.
Since your 2 choices aren't even the same type of structure (MF vs ETF), they follow different indices, they charge different fees, etc.. , you will have no problem.
With the proliferation of security choices in Canada there is never any need to run afoul of the rules. Even if you don't want to wait 30 days, you can switch to a similar choice and then switch to the identical choice.
One day I imagine we will even have switching with no capital gains tax, like we were promised.
You can also take advantage of all the low cost ETFs to delay paying capital gains tax by using a different fund near the time of withdrawal. The only capital gains payable will be based upon the last bought fund. This is similar to US law that allows tax lots.
Just be careful not to buy, or have bought, the same identical property in another account, by you or your spouse, in the last or next 30 days, if you have a loss. Especially tax advantaged accounts.
BTW, there's no superficial gain rule.