Better Regulation: Commission publishes 2020 Annual Burden Survey

©European Union, 2021, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service©European Union, 2021, Source: EC - Audiovisual Service

The European Commission has today published the 2020 Annual Burden Survey – an annual overview of the EU’s efforts to simplify legislation – laying out several concrete examples of how EU legislation was simplified in areas ranging from financial services, taxation and customs to transport and the environment. In 2020, achievements included adopting 26 legislative initiatives aimed at simplifying or reducing the administrative burden of EU rules, and finalising 25 evaluations and fitness checks. Maros Šefčovič, Vice-President for Interinstitutional Relations and Foresight, said: “As Europe’s recovery soars ahead, it is essential that we have a high-quality and efficient legislative framework in place. This entails identifying opportunities for the further simplification and digitalisation of EU law to maximise its direct benefits for Europeans and our businesses on the ground. We will continue to work tirelessly to ensure precisely that, building on the excellent work done so far. This annual overview shows us where we are, and what we need to strive for.” Initiatives to simplify, reduce administrative burdens or modernise EU legislation in 2020 include, for example, the Commission’s proposal for an EU Single Window Environment for Customs – a forward-looking digital solution for quicker and more efficient sharing of electronic data between different governmental authorities involved in goods clearance at the EU border, allowing traders to submit data only once. The fitness check of the ambient air Directives, which sets limits for key pollutants and air quality standards, identified administrative burdens that will be addressed in the upcoming revision proposal aimed at reducing ambiguities in the monitoring criteria and simplifying reporting requirements. The Commission also adopted a proposal to revise the TEN-E Regulation aiming to ensure more efficient reporting and simplified permitting procedures in view of the EU’s energy and climate objectives part of the Green Deal. The Annual Burden Surveys are part of the Better Regulation Agenda and Regulatory Fitness and Performance Programme (REFIT) .