Better Regulation

Better regulation leads to a better-performing economy, makes it easier to start and operate a business, increases the competitiveness of doing business in NSW, and improves customer satisfaction with government services.


Independent review of the NSW regulatory policy framework

In December 2015, the NSW Audit Office began a performance audit of red tape reduction programs managed by the Department of Premier and Cabinet from 2011-2015. The audit is now complete and a report has been published. 

In response to the recommendations in the report, the NSW Government is undertaking a comprehensive review of the NSW regulatory policy framework. 

The review will develop recommendations for enhancing the policies, institutions and tools that underpin regulatory quality in NSW. It is being overseen by an independent panel of experts in the fields of government, business and digitisation appointed by the Minister for Innovation and Better Regulation.

Further information will be provided when it becomes available.


The Guide to Better Regulation

To ensure regulation is appropriate, effective and efficient, the NSW Government published the Guide to Better Regulation (Guide) to assist agencies in developing regulation which is required, reasonable and responsive to the economic, social and environmental needs of NSW.

The following NSW Government documents supplement the Guide:

An interim updated version of the Guide was developed in October 2016 to reflect current changes to the role and responsibilities of the Better Regulation Division within the Department of Finance, Services and Innovation and incorporates the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) Licensing framework requirements for proposals that introduce or amend a licence.

The Guide is the subject of the independent review of the NSW regulatory policy framework, however, the requirements set out in the Guide continue to apply while this review is underway. It is expected that the interim version of the Guide will be revised again following the completion of the independent review in 2017.


IPART Licensing Framework

The NSW Government commissioned IPART to conduct a review of licence rationale and design, and to identify those licences where reform would produce the greatest reduction in regulatory burden for business and the community. IPART developed a Licensing Framework and accompanying Licensing Framework Guide to assist agencies in assessing the efficiency of licensing as a regulatory instrument, and to improve licence design and administration.

Agencies are required to apply the IPART Licensing Framework and Framework Guide:

  • When developing new regulatory proposals that involve licensing.
  • As part of any statutory requirement to review legislation that includes a licensing scheme.
  • At least once every 10 years where there is no statutory requirement to review legislation that includes a licensing scheme.

The Better Regulation Division within the Department of Finance, Services and Innovation will monitor the application of the IPART Licensing Framework, and will request agencies to provide annual updates on their progress in reviewing licensing schemes.

The IPART Licensing Framework Final Report and examples of the application of the Licensing Framework to specific licences are available from the IPART website.