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Tackling Red Tape – The Tobacco and Vapours Products Control Regulations

Finding ways to reduce red tape is one of the most important measures a government can take to help promote a healthy economy. A good regulatory environment helps Saskatchewan businesses innovate, grow and remain competitive. Because of this, we are seeking your help in assisting our efforts to reduce red tape in Saskatchewan. Regulations are developed to ensure public health, safety, social well-being and environmental protection measures have the lowest impact to business and Saskatchewan residents. Regulations that go beyond their intended purpose create red tape, which may create burdensome requirements or impact economic competitiveness.

Saskatchewan’s business community consistently identifies red tape as a major barrier to business operation and growth. Approximately $300M is lost each year as a result of provincial red tape in Saskatchewan. At the provincial level, there are approximately 250,000 government compliance requirements that businesses and Saskatchewan residents are required to follow.

Red tape is not always easy to define and isolate. Some examples of red tape include:

  • rules that significantly exceed government’s mandate to protect public health, safety, well-being and the environment (i.e. overregulation);
  • rules or barriers that impact a business’s competitiveness or ability to grow and innovate;
  • regulation that exceeds the benefit achieved from the regulation;
  • paperwork that is burdensome, unnecessary or ineffective;
  • rules that are unclear, confusing or overly complex;
  • approval or processing wait times that are excessive, unpublished or inconsistent;
  • rules that do not allow businesses to be flexible and use innovation or technology to achieve a desired outcome;
  • rules that are outdated, not relevant, obsolete or not enforced;
  • rules that duplicate requirements, create gaps in service or conflict with other government agencies;
  • rules that rely too heavily on penalties as a deterrent, instead of creating incentives to change;
  • rules that are developed without using a risk management approach;
  • there is no clear explanation or reason for the rule;
  • rules, requirements or government contact information is not easily accessible or available online, or may be out of date; and
  • the issue can be better addressed by the private sector rather than through government regulation.

The Government of Saskatchewan is working to remove as much red tape as possible. Although red tape cannot be completely eliminated, it can be greatly reduced. Government is preventing red tape from entering the system by using best practices when a regulation is being developed, and finding red tape that already exists in the system. This means reviewing every business-related regulation and removing all unnecessary compliance requirements. The purpose of this review is to identify and eliminate red tape and over-regulation. It is not intended to focus on identifying means to strengthen protectionary measures.

The Red Tape Reduction Committee has been tasked with reviewing all business-related regulations at least once every 10 years to ensure they remain relevant and removing red tape when necessary. Input received from stakeholders, such as yourself, is very important to this process.

The Ministry of Health is currently reviewing The Tobacco and Vapour Products Control Regulations and associated policies and procedures. We are interested in any ideas you may have for reducing red tape and regulatory barriers in your business and industry as a whole.&

Deadline for responses was February 24, 2023.

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