Research: The Official Controls (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2024: RPC Opinion (Green rated)

Regulatory Policy Committee

May 16
15:14 2024

The proposal is to enable the implementation of the Border Target Operating Model (BTOM), a global risk-based model for sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) border controls for Great Britain.

As originally submitted, the IA was not fit for purpose. The RPC had concerns with the counterfactual position used when calculating the EANDCB. The Department has since adjusted their counterfactual by using the Official Controls Regulation (OCR) position. The IA notes that this represents a scenario with no further legislation, and, on this basis, it appears to be in line with a traditional do nothing counterfactual. The RPC considers this to be acceptable as the primary counterfactual in the IA. However, the IA would benefit from providing further explanation. The IA appears to correctly identify direct and indirect costs to business but would benefit from providing further justification for this. The IA appropriately includes estimates of the cost to business against the as is counterfactual. This shows a net increase in cost and will more closely reflect business experience. The IA should present this assessment more transparently.

The RPC also found originally that the Small and Micro Business Assessment (SaMBA) was not fit for purpose as it did not consider mitigations for small and micro businesses who the IA explains are likely to face disproportionate costs. The SaMBA now includes mitigations the Department has put in place to reduce the burden on small and micro businesses. The IA should expand its assessment to include a specific section on the impact upon medium-sized businesses. The RPC now rates the IA as fit for purpose.

The revised IA was published by the department alongside the SI on 22nd April 2024.

Published 16 May 2024

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