Ex – ante Policy Impact Assessment

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Ex-Ante Policy Impact Assessment Regional UNDP/BRC Programme ...

Ex ante Policy Impact

Assessment Regional

UNDP/BRC Program - Special

review of Serbia


- UNDP Consultant -

- June 2008 -


• Goal of the regional project:

Institutionalizing ex-ante impact assessment, with

particular focus on poverty reduction and on ensuring equal

opportunities for the vulnerable and marginalized groups.

• Duration: : 2006 2009

UNDP Bratislava Regional Center (BRC) and the Open

Society Institute are jointly funding the project


• Participating countries: : Bosnia and Herzegovina,

Croatia, Moldova and Serbia

Current achievements I:

• Mapping of ex-ante Impact Assessment - Tools and

Experiences in Europe (2007)

the document contains case studies from the participating

countries. /available in English, Russian and Serbian


• Training Needs Assessment in the participating countries

(BiH, HR, Mold, Srb) of the project. (2007)

Mapping and Training Needs Assessment conducted by a

team of international and national experts.

• The four participating UNDP Country Offices benefit from

seed funding and expert advice in national activities to

establish legal and procedural frameworks and institutional

capacities for IA, including public participation in policymaking.

Current achievements II:

• Virtual Resource Centre on Ex-ante Impact Assessment

This website aims to provide civil servants, civil society

activists, UN country offices and others with knowledge

and tools to use impact assessment to support democratic

governance and good policy-making.

Content: /being gradually uploaded/

• Information about the regional project

Impact Assessment process and best practices

• Country overviews from the region

• Library

• Collection of useful links

Website available at:


Current achievements III:

• Based on a Training Needs Assessment in the four

participating countries, specialized training programmes are

being organized (so far in Moldova and Serbia).

• The first regional training on cross-cutting cutting issues of ex-ante

impact assessment is being currently organized.

The training will be held in Budapest, 23 - 27 June, 2008.

Participants: civil servants and civil society representatives

from the four participating countries.

Future Regional Ex - ante IA

program steps:

• Further in-depth regional trainings will be organized.

• Creation of a pool of national /potentially regional/ experts

from the participating countries. The future experts will be

identified at the regional trainings.

• Pilot ex-ante Impact Assessments will be supported in the

target countries.

• Tools for ex-ante impact assessment relevant to different

vulnerable groups will be designed.

Special Review of Serbia I:

Ex ante Policy Impact Assessment (PIA) research

conducted in May-June 2007

• Serbia - political volatility = legislative process at slow path

• Strong impetus in the comprehensive management of the

public policy in Serbia = EU integration process and legal and

regulatory harmonization with EU Acquis principles

• Strategic planning of public policy Government Action Plan

on Legal Harmonization with EU Acquis

and Annual

Legislative program

• Slow legislative pace due to lack of the Parliament functioning

• Current parliamentary rules of procedure also contributed to a

slow-down in the legislative process in Serbia, together with

the lack of specialized staff in the Parliament

Special Review of Serbia II:



for the successful implementation of the

consistent policy impact analysis (IA) in Serbia is the firm

political will and decisiveness of ruling political parties in

Serbia to pursue goals of ex-ante policy impact analysis, such

as the following ones:

Improving the drafting, analysis and implementation of

laws and regulations;

In the context of improvement the overall legislative

process in Serbia, furthering the capacity-building of

Serbian Parliament in direction of independence toward

executive branch and

In the framework of the rule of law and the consistent law

implementation, further strengthening of judicial

independence by improving technical effectiveness of

courts in Serbia.

Special Review of Serbia III:

• General feature - the legal system is faced with the need for

serious reforming owing to its low effectiveness, insufficient

efficiency and lack of financial prudence.

• Comprehensive ex-ante policy impact analysis does not exist

in practice of legal drafting process.

• Public administration and its services - huge dependency on

centers of political power, , insufficiently transparent and


• Public hearings are supported through international donors,

like UNDP and EU, but not as regular practice within the

Parliament within transparent process of legislative activities.

• In practice, the Government is the one that usually proposes

laws. The situation in which the Assembly proposes the laws

is an exception (Law on Supreme State Audit Institution, 05).

Legal system in Serbia - features

• Serbian legal system is characterized by the lack of integrated

planning, budgeting and evaluation of economic and social, as

well as ecological effects, , which would enable more real and

reliable assessment.

• Therefore, the policy of establishing and reviving the system

of the rule of law and ensuring legal security through ex-ante

policy impact analysis relies on overcoming of a series of

conceptual, organizational and operational weaknesses and

latent and/or manifest threats.

• The obligation to perform Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA)

introduced in October 2004 - the Government adopted

amendments to the Rules of Operation of the Government -

for each new law, and other regulatory instruments such as

decrees and orders, the responsible Ministry prepares a

justification statement containing answers/analysis to a set of

questions developed in accordance with the OECD RIA


Relevant aspects of legislative process

the position of IA?

• Draft law - accompanied by a justification statement Explanatory

memorandum, , which contains: the constitutional, i.e. legal basis; the

reasons for adopting the act, an explanation of the basic legal

institutes and particular solutions and an analysis of the impacts of

the law.

• Line ministry or other proposer of the law is obliged to submit a

Statement of Compliance of the draft law with the European Union


• Public consultations became obligatory (2005) for laws that

significantly change the legal regime in a certain area or of a

particular interest to the public.

• The most important issues to be addressed are the following: lack of

regulation in some areas, excessive regulation in other areas; quick q

drafting and adoption of laws without any impact analysis; ; lack of

capacity within the ministries to perform IA.


Seven lessons learned in Serbia

• I lesson Successful, comprehensive and sustainable IA requires

strong political support by the central government

• II lesson Targeted trainings based on case studies and “learning

by doing” = crucial for public administration

• III lesson Essential role of high-quality consultation process

providing necessary link between NGO and line ministries in the Ex-

ante IA = future optimal mirroring all relevant interests especially

important for marginalized and vulnerable groups

• IV lesson IA process - not too ambitious and comprehensive to

avoid possible administration burdens = prioritizing!

• V lesson establishing clear technical standards in performing Ex-

ante IA = designing of RIA Manual underway

• VI lesson Economic versus social impacts? = Answer: win-win

strategy and how to implement it both

• VII lesson pilot projects on Ex-ante IA have to gain local ownership

in targeted countries = sustainability!

Relevant recommendations on IA

Methodogical considerations - Better regulation requires knowledge of

local socio-economic milieu and adequate legal techniques in

overall policy making system

Timing of IA - Doing Ex-ante IA in very early stage of legislation drafting

= the best results of providing alternate options

Operationalisation of IA General context of the Legal harmonization of

national legislation with EU Acquis Communautaire provides for

technical standards focused on significant benefits of IA =

important for transition countries in EU accession process

Institutional requirements permanent government central

body/agency/commission in charge for coordination, expert support

in IA and monitoring of IA quality, as well as organizing targeted


trainings for responsible civil servants

Specificity of social IA - Poverty reduction domain proves to be IA

sensitive area international donors less interested then for

economic impact of regulation attracting FDI and enabling viable

private sector = necessary coordinated donors’

support for

transition countries

Concluding remarks

• Lack of unified international best practice model variety of forms

and experiences in IA process = importance of regional IA programs

as an instrument of know-how transfer and being the tool for creation

of the political demand for IA

• RIA = the most frequent case in the developed countries (UK) and

the transition states (Serbia)

• Place of SIA? Linked with reform of social protection system

importance of bottom-up approach and testing new ideas

• Partnership between the government and NGO sector in IA process -

extremely significant for future smoothly implementation of regulation

and overall public policy

• Problem of transition countries frequent reviews and urgent

amendment procedures for legislation, together with political

instability cause disturbances in Ex-ante IA performance

• Problem solution inter alia targeted trainings on IA process for

public administration and wider audience

• Poverty reduction (PR) and equal opportunities focus requires

intensive IA work and capacity building measures

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