All proposed legislation that concern business must be submitted to the Swedish Better Regulation Council. An impact assessment must accompany each proposal.
The Council does not issue opinions on all proposals that it receives, it prioritises. Various cicumstances determine whether an opinion will be issued, circumstances, such as the expected affects of a proposal on business, the specified response time and the Council´s current workload. One prerequisite for a case to be reviewed by the Council is naturally that it is encompassed by the Council´s terms of reference, it must also have been submitted to the Council. The Council does not issue Opinions on proposals for general advice or proposals that do not contain any statute text. Proposals concerning European Union legislation also fall outside the Council´s mandate.
When the Council does not issue an opinion on a case that has been submitted, a “Secreteriat Response” is sent instead. The Administrative Director in consultation with the Council´s Chair determines whether a Sectreteriat Response will be issued.
The Council’s opinion contains a recommendation or objection concerning the proposal’s suitability in administrative terms, as well as an assessment of the overall quality of the impact assessment. With respect to the administrative assessment, the Council either recommends or rejects the proposal.
In order for the Council to recommend a proposal it is normally required that the impact assessment shows that the proposed statute leads, from an administrative viewpoint, to the most suitable solution. This may be the case even when the administrative costs are presumed to increase. The Council may, in exceptional instances, issue a recommendation despite the impact assessment being weak or missing if it is also obvious that the best solution from an administrative viewpoint has been selected.
The Council will on occasion issue a recommendation with certain reservations. This has occurred when the proposal is good in the overall but where parts of the proposal could have been formulated in a better manner or when the regulators could have gone further in their simplification ambitions. As a rule the Council objects to proposals when the impact assessment is defective or not attached. The effects of the administrative costs are then uncertain and it is not possible to determine whether the most suitable solution from an administrative viewpoint has been selected. Objections are also issued when the impact assessment can be approved but the Council assesses, for some reason, that the regulator has not chosen the most suitable solution from an administrative viewpoint. The Council has, in other words, found that the proposal leads to unnecessary inconvenience.
What is crucial for the Council in adopting a position on an impact assessment is whether it fulfils the requirements in Sections 6 and 7 of the Ordinance on Regulatory Impact Assessment. In general, the Council’s assessment concerns only conditions for business. This means that consequences for governmental agencies and individuals are not encompassed by the review. In each case the Council assesses the weight that must assigned to the points in Sections 6 and 7 of the Ordinance on Regulatory Impact Assessment. It should be noted in this regard that according to Section 4 of the Ordinance on Regulatory Impact Assessment, and the guidelines of the Government Offices of Sweden, the cost-related and other consequences of the proposed regulations must be analysed to the extent which is necessary for the individual case. This means that the proportionality principle applies when an impact assessment is carried out. When adopting a position, the following formulations are used: The impact assessment is in accordance with section 6 and 7 of the Ordinance on Regulatory Impact Assessment or The impact assessment is not in accordance with section 6 and 7 of the Ordinance on Regulatory Impact Assessment.