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Compliance costs

Measuring and representing bureaucracy comprehensively

Compliance costs are the most comprehensive measure of bureaucracy and the basis of measurement. It covers the time spent and the costs incurred by citizens, businesses and public authorities when they comply with a legal requirement. Every year, the Federal Statistical Office calculates and publishes the change in compliance costs.


Ex-ante estimation

As has been explained in the section on compliance costs, the enactment of new laws and regulations often has time and cost implications for citizens, business and public administration. To minimise this burden, cost estimations are carried out during the development of new regulations. This is to determine the prospective burden on business and the public and to establish whether the new law will simplify existing regulations and therefore even save costs. Ex-ante estimations, as they are called, are used to design regulatory changes such that they fulfil the intended objective while keeping the burden on business and citizens to a minimum.


Administrative burden index

Making bureaucracy measurable

The administrative burden index concretises the bureaucratic burden on businesses and shows its development over time. Typical paperwork is what the index is aimed at. This includes requests, reports, labelling, statistics and evidence.


Barometer of burdens

Statistical reports - major contribution for official statistics

The burden barometer reflects the annual administrative burden for businesses resulting from official statistics. The barometer of burdens significantly contributes to a realistic assessment of the response burden caused by statistics, which is still "felt" ro be rather high. Less than one percent of the bureaucracy costs of businesses in Germany are caused by reporting data for official statistics.


Life events survey

Citizens and businesses are largely satisfied with the public authorities

People perceive bureaucracy in different ways. Any contact with the public administration is primarily assessed from the perspective of the individual situation and the requests and applications made as a result.


Administrative Data Information Platform

Sources of administrative data can be researched for the first time

The Administrative Data Information Platform of the Federal Statistical Office for the first time provides a comprehensive overview of the data held by public authorities.



Methodological notes on the results

Mission and methodology of measuring administrative burdens - the Standard Cost Model and compliance costs