REGULATORY IMPACT ASSESSMENT OF THE DRAFT LAW ON FOOD SAFETY OF 2009
Trần Thị Mai Oanh, Khương Anh Tuấn et al.
Place of publication: Ministry of Health
Year of publication: 2009
The Law on Enactment of normative documents No. 17/2008/QH12 and Decree 24/2009/NĐ-CP, Article 38, Chapter III, requires that any agencies commissioning a law drafting process are responsible to provide an impact assessment of the legislation, review of enforcement performance and regulatory impact analysis (RIA).
This review was conducted by the Health Strategy and Policy Institute in 2009 to evaluate the socioeconomic impact in terms of some key areas of concern in the draft Law on Food Hygiene and Safety, to help provide evidence for the development and optimization of the Food Hygiene and Safety law, and inform the government and National Assembly in making decision on approval of this law.
The method used is designed based on the minimum RIA framework based on RIA guidelines for Vietnam of GTZ.
Three key areas of concern with the draft law were included in the assessment:
• Regulations on management methodology at food production, processing and trading facilities;
• Regulations on segregation of governance duties among ministries and line agencies;
• Regulations on professional food inspection.
Alternative options to each of the dimensions are also included for socioeconomic impact assessment to highlight in part the direct and indirect benefits, necessary costs, as well as socioeconomic bearings, equity, gender, the poor, ethnic minorities etc.); impacts on the public administration system and intended groups affected by the law; food production, processing facilities, consumers, sustainable development and feasibility of individual perspectives and alternatives.
Issues and alternatives were discussed and assessed by various stakeholders who may be influenced by the law at different levels and were compiled and analyzed to identity any positive and negative impacts, economic and social benefits of every option, and the practicability of each area of concern and alternatives.
All the three key areas of concern in the draft law (scenarios 0) are supplemented with 2-3 alternatives. Scenarios 0 and alternatives were discussed by representatives from various agencies of the National Assembly, Office of Government and stakeholders (ministries, line agencies, local governments, tax offices, market watchdog, food producers and dealers, consumer representatives and so on). The discussion concentrated on the socioeconomic impacts on each target group, including both positive and negative influence. Information was compiled and analyzed to highlight advantages and workability of each option, as well as challenges and required conditions to choose the alternatives, if integrated in the law. In addition, the assessment also calculated the benefits and necessary costs for the alternatives to be materialized, albeit at a not very detailed level due to both time and input data limitations.
The socioeconomic impact review of the Law on Food safety has been used together with the review of the enforcement performance of other food safety normative documents, to help the Ministry of Health, National Assembly, government and relevant ministries and line agencies to have the information and evidence needed for decision making on key areas of the law.