New Bill Sets Higher Standards For Regulation

  • Rodney Hide
Regulatory Reform

Regulatory Reform Minister Rodney Hide will today introduce a Bill to Parliament to provide greater transparency and accountability for the quality of laws and regulations in New Zealand. 

“New Zealand has a problem with too much regulation, and too much bad regulation.  These regulations impose real costs on our businesses, and unnecessary burdens on individuals,” Mr Hide said. 

"Cabinet rules have long recognised the need to test new laws and regulations for their compliance with legal principles and economic tests.  However, the lack of a legislative backing for such requirements has meant that Parliament and the public can be inadequately informed about the degree to which laws and regulations fail to comply with them.

“The Regulatory Standards Bill will require all proposed new laws and regulations to be assessed against a core set of accepted regulatory principles based on existing, well-established guidelines. 

“Ministers and MPs will still be able to put forward laws that do not comply with these principles.  However, they will have to explain why non-compliance was ‘reasonable and can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society’. 

"The Regulatory Standards Bill forces Ministers and MPs to be more honest and clear about how their laws and rules will affect New Zealanders.  It will make law-making transparent and our law-makers accountable,” Mr Hide said. 

The Regulatory Standards Bill was developed in 2009 by the Regulatory Responsibility Taskforce, chaired by former Treasury Secretary Dr Graham Scott. Its report is available on the Treasury's website here: