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  • by Karma Loveday

Lords to scrutinise regulators’ independence and accountability

How independent regulators are from government, and how they are held to account, will form the focus of the House of Lords Industry and Regulators Committee’s next inquiry.

The committee has called for evidence by 1 December on the following areas:

• the roles and remits of regulators;

• the balance between the responsibilities of regulators and those of the government;

• guidance given by the government to regulators;

• the independence of regulators;

• co-operation between regulators;

• the skills and expertise of regulators;

• the role of Parliament in scrutinising regulators;

• scrutiny, accountability and transparency of regulators;

• the effectiveness of regulators;

• performance metrics; and

• international comparators.

Committee chair, Lord Hollick, said: “The committee has recently conducted scrutiny of regulators including Ofwat, Ofgem, The Pension Regulator, Financial Conduct Authority, Prudential Regulation Authority, and the Office for Students. A common area of concern arising from all these inquiries is the relationship between the regulator and the Government, and the level of independence and accountability regulators have.

“Many regulators are public bodies funded by the taxpayer and have significant powers; it is therefore vital that they are scrutinised and held to account. This short, cross-cutting inquiry will shine a light on the UK regulatory ecosystem and how effective it is.”

The first evidence session will be held on Tuesday, featuring representatives from the National Audit Office, Slaughter and May, and former CMA chair Lord Tyrie. Details HERE

  • Members of the House of Lords debated the Industry and Regulators Committee’s water report –The affluent and the effluent: cleaning up failures in water and sewage regulation – last week. The debate can be watched HERE:


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