Digital instead of analog: The Federal Council wants to relieve SMEs of too much administration with a package of measures. (theme image)
Attractive business practices should not be hampered by inefficient and excessive regulations, the Federal Council wrote on Friday. With the Company Relief Act (UEG), he therefore wants to make electronic services from the authorities accessible to companies via the central electronic platform Easygov and a single account.
With the regulatory brakes desired by the majority of parliament, regulations that are particularly costly for companies should in future be subject to a qualified majority in parliament. This requires a change in the constitution and ultimately a referendum.
criticism in the consultation
The instrument brought into play by the FDP was criticized during the consultation. The Bundesrat also waived an application for approval. In addition to the constitution, the parliamentary law would also have to be amended for the introduction of the regulatory brake.
The qualified majority of the regulation brake should apply if new political regulations affect more than 10,000 companies or if regulation costs of more than 100 million Swiss francs accumulate over ten years. The idea of the regulatory brake is based on the existing spending brake.
Cantons were skeptical
The instrument had a difficult time in the consultation. Mainly the SVP, FDP, Mitte and the economy liked it. It creates transparency about regulatory costs and draws attention to the burden on companies.
The majority of the cantons, on the other hand, as well as the SP, Greens, GLP and EPP, spoke out against the regulatory brake. Among other things, they criticized the “preferential treatment” of the interests of companies in the legislative process. They also fear application difficulties.
The Federal Council is against the brakes
The Federal Council does not think much of the regulatory brake either. There is a risk that a minority could block reforms. And the instrument could not bring less bureaucracy, as hoped, but possibly more bureaucracy. Overall, the state government considers the political side effects to be greater “than the manageable expected relief effects on companies”.
According to the Federal Council, the desired relief could largely be achieved with the UEG and thus without parliamentary restrictions. The UEG, triggered by an initiative by the SVP, was less controversial in the consultation. The majority of the parties, business and industry associations supported the proposal.
Location Switzerland can become more attractive
The majority found that the relief for companies could increase the attractiveness of the location. For the negative minority, the question arose as to whether a UEG was needed and whether the cost-benefit ratio was right when it was submitted.
With the new law, the Federal Council intends to enshrine principles and audit obligations in law. Regulations are to be designed to be efficient and administratively lean, especially for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). More transparently reported regulatory costs for companies should provide the Federal Council and Parliament with a better basis for decision-making.
In addition, existing regulations are to be checked for their relief potential by means of area studies. Overall, the federal administration should more consistently identify and exploit the opportunities for relief in existing and new regulations. (SDA)