Moving Forward to Improve Regulation

From: RegBlog | Penn Program on Regulation

Regulation is a critical tool in the hands of government to support economic growth and well-being. However, it is often overlooked, with many governments focusing almost all of their energy instead on designing their tax and spending policies. We often hear how politicians raise or reduce taxes or boost or curb public spending to achieve their policy objectives, but only rarely do we hear that they pay attention to the way they develop and enforce regulation. Largely, we take for granted the rules that determine our safety and lifestyle and the playing field of our companies. Yet we should not ignore regulation. When poorly conceived, government rules can result in unintended consequences, excessive costs, or both. Worse, they may not even serve their intended purposes of protecting the public or boosting economic activity.

The OECD Regulatory Policy Outlook is the first effort to date to track systematically the progress being made by Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries toward improving the ways they develop, implement, and review their laws and regulations. The Regulatory Policy Outlook came out last fall, just three years after the adoption of the OECD Recommendation on Regulatory Policy and Governance, a comprehensive and aspirational international standard on how to promote regulatory quality. The Regulatory Policy Outlook builds on a comprehensive and unique dataset of law-making – the 2015 Indicators of Regulatory Policy and Governance (iREG) – and showcases state-of–the-art regulatory policy practices as of December 2014.

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