Spain Passed 32 Royal Decrees In 2021, The Second Highest Figure Since 1978, Says Employers Association


Spain approved a total of 32 royal decrees laws in 2021, the second highest figure since 1978 after that of 2020, when the health crisis led to the approval of 39 such rules. This is according to the report ‘Regulatory Production’ that CEOE prepares every year and in which it is found that 2021 was the sixth consecutive year in which the number of royal decrees exceeded the number of ordinary laws.

According to the employers’ association, the total number of pages published by the state and regional Official Gazettes last year reached 1,088,249, the highest figure in the last 10 years and 10% higher than the annual average.

Thus, 2021 was the fifth year with the highest regulatory production “since the high figures reached during the first decade of the beginning of the democratic period,” says CEOE.

The business organization also highlights in its report that 2021 saw the introduction of the figure of the Royal Decree Law “Omnibus” to transpose numerous European directives on very diverse matters. “It can be stated that practically 50% of the regulations with the status of law have been developed through a royal decree law,” the employers’ organization maintains.

On the other hand, the CEOE report points out that 851 new regulations of different rank were approved last year in Spain at the state level, an increase of 7.3% compared to 2020.

A total of 241,803 pages were published in Spain in 2021, an increase of 26.1% over 2020.

In the case of the autonomous communities, their official gazettes published a total of 846,446 pages in 2021, 24% more than the previous year and the highest figure in the last ten years. In fact, according to the employers’ association, the autonomous communities are responsible for 78% of the pages published in the official gazettes.

The regulations with the status of law (laws, legislative decrees and decree laws) approved by the autonomous communities and included in their own official gazettes amounted to 348 in 2021, up 4.8%.
On the other hand, the number of regulations with the rank of law originating from the autonomous communities was five times higher than that of regulations with the rank of state law.

European Regulations increased by 7.2%

At the European Union level, the CEOE report counts 2,176 legal acts in 2021, distributed among 1,005 regulations, 29 directives and 1,142 decisions. Compared to the previous year’s regulatory activity, there has been an increase of 7.2%, as 2,030 legal acts were adopted within the EU in 2020.

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The Corner
The Corner has a team of on-the-ground reporters in capital cities ranging from New York to Beijing. Their stories are edited by the teams at the Spanish magazine Consejeros (for members of companies’ boards of directors) and at the stock market news site Consenso Del Mercado (market consensus). They have worked in economics and communication for over 25 years.