On November 4, 2016 regulatory reform was launched in Bulgaria with the entry into force of the largest ever changes to the Law on Normative Acts since its adoption in the 1970s, integrating regulatory impact assessment and the anchored in it structured public consultations, as imperative mechanisms in the national rule-making process.

Exactly three years and one month later, Bulgaria has a new, modern and comprehensive Guide for Carrying out Ex-Ante Impact Assessment, adopted by a decision of the Council of Ministers at its meeting on 4 December 2019.

The Guide updates the methodological framework for carrying out ex-ante impact assessments, in accordance with the amendments to the Law on Normative Acts, the Ordinance on the Scope and Methodology for Carrying Out Impact Assessments and the 2016 Rules of Procedure of the Council of Ministers and its Administration, as well as the latest trends in the development of better regulation as a concept and EU good practices, as they are adopted in the current Better Regulation Guidelines of the European Commission.

The document meets the needs of the Bulgarian administration for methodological support and guidance for doing ex-ante impact assessments of high quality, which create the necessary prerequisites for making public decisions, including regulatory ones of best quality, based on objective data and evidence, professionally and transparently analyzed, using strict and scientifically indisputable methods.

The Guide offers general guidelines and rules for impact assessment, which are inherently the same for all public decisions – strategies, policies and regulations. Hence, it is useful and fully applicable to impact assessments of draft regulations proposed by MPs, for carrying out assessments when legislation is drafted by ministers and collegial bodies outside the Executive, in the implementation of local self-government and the normative acts issued by the municipal councils, as well as by experts doing impact assessments based on other grounds.

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