New gov’t to introduce regulator to oversee regulators

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Among the agreements set out by the incoming coalition government, a new very powerful body will be set up as part of the Economic Arrangements Law with far reaching regulatory powers to change new regulations and existing ones. However, the new body could cause friction between Prime Minister designate Naftali Bennett and Minister of Finance designate Avigdor Liberman because it is unclear under which of these two ministers will the new regulation czar will be controlled.

Bennett introduced the idea as one of the main policy planks in Yamina’s election manifesto and had wanted MK Abir Kara to serve cas a deputy minister to oversee the new position. But no mention of this is made in the coalition agreements.

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However, in the coalition agreement between Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid and Avigdor Liberman’s Yisrael Beitenu, it was agreed that Liberman will head the Ministerial Committee for Regulatory Matters and that as part of the next Economic Arrangements Law, there will be an overall plan for reducing the regulatory burden through “a platform with operative authority,” whose powers will be anchored in a special law.

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In the agreement with Yisrael Beitenu, it is written that the Knesset will again set up a Reform Committee, headed by one of Yisrael Beitenu’s MKs, mainly to promote the topic of infrastructures. The agreement also states that Liberman will have another of his MKs as a minister in the Ministry of Finance as well as control of the key Knesset Finance Committee, giving the party a monopoly on budgetary matters and Knesset reforms.

The new regulatory authority will have broad powers to intervene not only on new regulations but also existing regulations, or at least so it says in the coalition agreement between Yesh Atid and Yisrael Beitenu.

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The structure of the new authority will be similar to that of the Electricity Authority which has civil servants and public representatives on a council to oversee the Israel Electricity Corp. But it remains unclear to which government ministry, this new powerful regulator of the regulators, will be attached.

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Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on June 8, 2021

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2021

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