The following guidance provides a suggested format and structure for the preparation of a RIS.
Objectives of the Legislation
Include a clear statement of the objectives of the legislation and the reasons for them. In particular, detail the objectives to be achieved by the restriction on competition or impact on business. Care must be taken not to confuse the objectives of the legislation with the strategies for achieving the objectives.
The objectives should:
- be reasonable and appropriate; and
- not be inconsistent with the objective of other Acts, subordinate legislation and stated Government policies.
Nature of the Restriction on Competition
Clearly identify the nature of the legislative restrictions on competition. Governments, through legislation, intervene in markets for many reasons and in many ways. The RIS assessment should primarily be concerned with the restrictions which impact most directly on competition.
Specific restrictions on competition are explained more fully in the “Assessing competition restrictions" section above.
Impact on Business
Include an assessment of whether the legislation will have a significant impact on business (other than that impact caused by any restriction on competition) and the costs and benefits involved.
Include a summary of the dollar costs and benefits of the impact on business and each of the identified options. In particular, there will need to be a full discussion of those impacts that are not able to be quantified in dollar terms.
Costs and Benefits of the Restriction on Competition
Include an assessment of whether the legislation will have a significant impact on competition and, if so, an evaluation of whether the benefits of the restriction outweigh the likely costs. If the benefits outweigh the likely costs, this section should include an evaluation of whether the restriction represents the absolute minimum in the public benefit.
Include a summary of the dollar costs and benefits of the restriction on competition and each of the identified options. There will also need to be a discussion of the impacts that are not able to be quantified in dollar terms.
Identify all alternative options which would also achieve the desired objectives, either wholly or substantially, including the option of removing the legislative restriction on competition or impact on business or not proceeding with the proposed legislation. If a legislative approach is recommended, provide an explanation of why this is the most efficient means of achieving the objectives. Also consider whether the existing or proposed restrictions are the absolute minimum necessary in the public interest.
Greatest Net Benefit / Least Net Cost Alternative
Include an assessment of which of the alternative options involves the greatest net benefit or least net cost to the community. This may involve a comparison of the restriction on competition and its alternatives.
Statement of Consultation Process
Provide details of the public consultation process undertaken.
In preparing a RIS, it should be noted that:
- where costs and benefits are referred to, economic, social and environmental costs and benefits, both direct and indirect, are to be taken into account and given due consideration; and
- costs and benefits must, where possible, be quantified. If this is not possible, the anticipated impacts of the action and of each alternative must be stated and presented in a way that permits a comparison of the costs and benefits.