New European Commission communication on Better Regulation: Joining forces to make better laws

28-05-2021

Better Regulation ensures that EU policies and laws are prepared in an open, transparent manner, informed by the best available evidence and backed by comprehensive stakeholder involvement so that they achieve their objectives at minimum cost. It is a dynamic agenda that has gradually evolved in the European Commission since the early 2000s. Today's Better Regulation agenda covers the whole policy cycle. It was shaped under the Juncker Commission presidency, which formally declared it a priority, with the aim of strengthening the effectiveness, transparency and accountability of its actions across all policy areas. The comprehensive Better Regulation package of 2015 presented a strategy, guidelines and a toolbox, and established the Regulatory Scrutiny Board as the Commission's regulatory oversight body. It also paved the way for the Interinstitutional Agreement on Better Law-Making (IIA-BLM) concluded by the Commission, Parliament and Council in April 2016, and which, inter alia, defines their respective roles and responsibilities in the regulatory process. Following a revision in 2017, the Commission took stock of the Better Regulation agenda in 2019, concluding that in a post-fact world, evidence-based policy-making remains an imperative. The long-awaited new Commission communication, adopted on 29 April 2021, draws lessons from the Better Regulation stocktaking review. At the same time, it sets out a policy-making framework that aims at supporting post-crisis recovery and the twin digital and green transformation, in line with the Commission's intention to advance the Better Regulation agenda further, with 'future-proof legislation that can stand the test of time'.

Better Regulation ensures that EU policies and laws are prepared in an open, transparent manner, informed by the best available evidence and backed by comprehensive stakeholder involvement so that they achieve their objectives at minimum cost. It is a dynamic agenda that has gradually evolved in the European Commission since the early 2000s. Today's Better Regulation agenda covers the whole policy cycle. It was shaped under the Juncker Commission presidency, which formally declared it a priority, with the aim of strengthening the effectiveness, transparency and accountability of its actions across all policy areas. The comprehensive Better Regulation package of 2015 presented a strategy, guidelines and a toolbox, and established the Regulatory Scrutiny Board as the Commission's regulatory oversight body. It also paved the way for the Interinstitutional Agreement on Better Law-Making (IIA-BLM) concluded by the Commission, Parliament and Council in April 2016, and which, inter alia, defines their respective roles and responsibilities in the regulatory process. Following a revision in 2017, the Commission took stock of the Better Regulation agenda in 2019, concluding that in a post-fact world, evidence-based policy-making remains an imperative. The long-awaited new Commission communication, adopted on 29 April 2021, draws lessons from the Better Regulation stocktaking review. At the same time, it sets out a policy-making framework that aims at supporting post-crisis recovery and the twin digital and green transformation, in line with the Commission's intention to advance the Better Regulation agenda further, with 'future-proof legislation that can stand the test of time'.