The Impact of Regulation in the Foundational Economy

Our report ‘The impact of regulation in the foundational economy’ was produced as part of the IWA’s project with CREW to look at the foundational economy as a policy agenda in Wales. The project aims to identify new opportunities for policy makers to strengthen the foundational economy in Wales, boosting the position of grounded Welsh firms and ensuring that citizens have access to high quality everyday goods and services. 

Produced in collaboration with The Means, a consultancy working on place making across the UK, our report outlines how regulations and their enforcement can disproportionately impact small and medium sized businesses, making it hard for new firms to enter established markets and to expand.

From interviews with business owners in key sectors of construction, social care, food and manufacturing, we highlight examples of confusion about when rules apply, the complexity caused by overlapping requirements and the lack of flexibility in how they are enforced. 

We make a series of recommendations for regulatory bodies, including the Welsh Government and Wales’ local authorities:

  • To establish a formal basis for a ‘Better Regulation’ agenda in Wales;
  • To support the ‘think small first’ principles that are widely used across Europe;
  • To use principles rather than rules where appropriate;
  • To provide support and guidance to help with compliance.

You can read the full report here: The Impact of Regulation in the Foundational Economy.

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