New scheme means regulators will share reform plans with business

A new scheme has been launched with the aim of giving businesses a stronger voice in influencing how regulators change the way they work.

Under the new Accountability for Regulator Impact Scheme, non-economic regulators that are planning a significant change in policy or practice – for example, by updating guidance or inspection regimes – will assess and quantify the impact of that change on business.

They will then share and discuss these assessments with trade associations and other business representatives before carrying out the proposed changes.

Business Minister Michael Fallon says the measure was part of the Government’s drive to ensure that the enforcement of regulation places minimum burdens on industry, while delivering essential protections and creating a level playing field on which companies can compete fairly:

“Promoting transparent and accountable decision-making is a vital step in forging a new partnership between regulators and law-abiding companies. It will boost confidence, raise standards and help eliminate unnecessary red tape.”

Julia Evans, Chief Executive of the National Federation of Builders and Chair of the Trade Association Forum, says the NFB fully supports early stage involvement between regulators and industry in developing effective government policy: “While SMEs encourage drives to scrap unnecessary regulation through schemes such as the Red Tape Challenge, small businesses are usually supportive of working with regulators to develop workable practices that help them do business.

“The Accountability for Regulator Impact Scheme is a win-win for government and industry that allows businesses to work with regulators. Regulators are now able to actively engage with industry to ensure that new policies address real business concerns.”

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