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OECD Regulatory Policy Outlook 2015

image of OECD Regulatory Policy Outlook 2015

Regulations are the rules that govern the everyday life of businesses and citizens. They are an essential instrument in the hands of government to promote economic growth, social welfare and environmental protection. However, regulations can also be costly and ineffective in achieving their objectives. The Regulatory Policy Outlook is the first evidence-based analysis of the progress made by countries to improve the way they regulate. Based on a unique survey filled by all OECD countries and the European Commission, the Outlook assesses progress in establishing the conditions for good regulation. It provides unique insights into the organisation and institutional settings in countries to design, enforce and revise regulations. It uncovers the areas of the regulatory cycle that receive too limited attention from policy makers, and identifies actors who have an important part to play to improve the way regulations are developed, implemented and evaluated. It reviews the use of three critical tools of regulatory policy (Regulatory Impact Assessment, stakeholder engagement and ex post evaluation) and proposes options to use them in a more strategic manner to inform the development and delivery of regulations.

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United States

The Administrative Procedure Act governs the rule-making process in the United States, requiring agencies to provide public notice and seek comment prior to issuing new regulations or revising existing ones. Specifically, agencies are required to publish a regulatory proposal that provides sufficient information – including the evidence on which the proposal is based and the regulatory text with which the public would need to comply – to apprise stakeholders of the issues involved so that they may present responsive data or arguments. Agencies must then explain how they addressed significant issues raised by commenters. Together with the proposal and supporting analyses, the comments form the public record that serves as the rational basis for each final regulation. The APA also allows for judicial review of the final rule to ensure compliance with this process.

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