Simplified and efficient policies and laws for perspective European integration

New Commission’s “fit for Future platform” is aimed at gathering practical expertise in various policy areas from national, regional, local authorities, as well as from the Committee of the Regions, the European Economic and Social Committee and other stakeholders. Collected data will be used for the Commission’s work on simplification of existing EU laws, reducing unnecessary burdens and to ensure that Union policies “fit to new and emerging European challenges”.

According to the EU’s political priorities, the Commission has a commitment to simplify existing legislation and reducing administrative and other regulatory disturbances and costs. It is all described in a Commission program on regulatory fitness adopted in 2012. It is said, in part, in the communication, that “to guarantee EU regulatory quality, EU legislation and the national rules that implement it, must be managed in a manner that ensures its continued efficiently in achieving public policy objectives. Regulatory frameworks must be fit for purpose and remain so as problems evolve, new solutions emerge and political priorities change. To this end, the Commission will make the identification of unnecessary costs and areas for performance improvement an integral and permanent part of its policy-making and programming across all EU legislation”.

As to the member states, the Commission recommends “a crucial cooperation between the Commission and the states if EU legislation is to deliver its full benefits at minimum cost to citizens, workers and enterprises. The strength of national administrative capacity and national regulatory quality has a direct impact on whether EU public policy aims can be achieved on the ground. Inputs from the member states’ administrations and institutions are of critical importance for the design and evaluation of EU legislation. In transposing and implementing EU legislation, including the rules governing activities funded by the EU budget, the states are responsible for ensuring that their regulatory framework is clear and accessible. National Parliaments play a key role in checking that the subsidiarity principle is correctly applied” (italics mine, EE).

Source:  Communication COM/2012/0746 final on “regulatory fitness” in:

https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=COM:2012:0746:FIN

 

Three clusters with 15 initiatives

The Commission’s Fit for Future Platform, F4F has now selected 15 initiatives (5 in each of three clusters) with the aim of helping to simplify EU law, cut red tape for citizens and businesses, and ensure that EU policies respond to new and emerging challenges.

Selected clusters’ topics are covering a broad range of sectors from competition, finance, health, environment, statistics and transport, to customs and internal market. The collected information and opinions will enrich the Commission analysis and inform its evaluations and impact assessments. The Platform’s first annual work program is expected to be adopted by the end of February 2021.

All ideas for simplification and burden reduction in each of the 15 selected topics/clusters shall be received by 30 April 2021; and then it will be considered by the Platform in preparing its opinions and recommendations. Besides, all the suggestions and opinions will be taken into account for the preparation of the 2022 Commission’s annual work program.

Commission Vice-President for Inter-institutional Relations and Foresight, and Chairman of the Fit for Future Platform, Maroš Šefčovič underlined that “simplification has become more important than ever, as we seek to kick-start Europe’s economy, hit by the pandemic”.

Although the European regulatory policy is recognised as one of the best in the world, he argued, the Commission shall have to ensure that the EU institutions provide for the desired benefits in the national socio-economic development with a simplified legislation, reduced burden wherever possible and being optimally forward-looking.  https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/IP_21_942

 

Platform’s guiding principles

In the mentioned three clusters, the following guiding principles have been revealed:

– In digitalisation: helping businesses to take up digital solutions and accelerating public sector modernisation to reduce regulatory burdens.

– In efficient labeling, authorisation and reporting obligations: identifying bottlenecks due to disparities across the EU states, striving to simplify procedures to facilitate investment in future infrastructure and innovation, and striking the right balance between reporting efforts and performance assessment of EU legislation to help, in particular, SMEs.

– In simplification of EU legislation: ensuring that EU laws are predictable, unambiguous and avoid overlaps in different areas.

See: https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/law-making-process/evaluating-and-improving-existing-laws/refit-making-eu-law-simpler-less-costly-and-future-proof/fit-future-platform-f4f_en

 

The idea of simplifying administrative and law-type “regulatory burden” in implementing EU’s socio-economic policies and the process of European integration is a good “conditional impetus” to the member states in  their drive for optimal recovery and resilience measures.

More information in the following Commission’s websites: The Fit for Future Platform; Have Your Say – Simplify!; Press release on the launch of the Fit for Future Platform; and European Commission 2021 work programme.

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