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Impact Assessments

Volume 460: debated on Thursday 17 May 2007

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster in what ways impact assessments will differ from regulatory impact assessments. (137092)

Following a public consultation, on 2 April 2007 the Government announced the introduction of a new Impact Assessment (IA) to replace the previous Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) process.

Details of the new IA, including changes from the RIA process, can be found at:

http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/regulation/ria/index.asp

Key changes include:

A revised template aimed at improving clarity and transparency of IAs. This includes new requirements to more clearly summarise the rationale for government intervention and the evidence supporting the proposals.

A strengthened ministerial declaration that will bolster the quality of the analysis in IAs and help embed this earlier in the policy making process.

An increased emphasis on post-implementation review—the need for this existing requirement is featured on the front page of the new IA template.

Improved analysis of the impact on businesses and the third sector, with an indication of the estimated annual cost per organisation of the policy option for micro, small, medium and large organizations, and requiring policy makers to consider whether micro and small businesses should be exempted from the regulation.

The new process is being phased in—IAs in the new format will appear in public consultations from mid-May and, from November 2007, we expect that all IAs will use the new format.