The Foundation delivers a legislative drafting workshop for portfolio Ministries and Departments in the Maldives

The second workshop in a series to equip ministerial staff with the tools to produce high quality legislation concluded

From 19 to 21 June 2022, the Max Planck Foundation conducted the second workshop for legal and technical officers from various portfolio Ministries, Departments and Bodies in the Maldives on the practical considerations for transforming policy into legislation. The workshop series aims to support the Strategic Action Plan (2019-2023) of the Government of Maldives, by promoting the skills, knowledge and techniques of best practices in legislative drafting and policy development to be able to address common legislative solutions to policy questions or problems which frequently occur. This activity was held in-person in the capital city of Malé.

The opening day familiarised participants with the techniques used to structure legislation and provided drafting guidelines for formulating the different types of standard provisions in legislation based on general organisational principles as well as comparative best practices. Furthermore, the sessions also highlighted the importance of framing specific delegated law-making powers within the parent Act and provided guidance to ensure the drafting of valid delegated legislation including its format, design and structure.

The second day of the workshop explored ways in which participants can develop effective compliance and enforcement mechanisms, and the appropriate regulatory tools to ensure that legislation operates effectively and as intended. Sessions provided an opportunity for participants to formulate provisions using ordinary rules of grammar when creating binding legal relationships and to consider their intended effect. In addition, participants also examined a range of general regulatory powers, enforcement options and safeguards, which are appropriate in relation to the purpose of the legislation, the particular circumstances and the regulatory system in which it will operate.

The final day of the workshop focused on understanding why new statutory bodies are created at arms-length or may have different hierarchical relationships from traditionally functioning core ministries. Another focus was the challenges that these bodies are likely to create if a compelling case of overriding public interest need has not been made and if appropriate governance arrangements in relation to internal management and external oversight have not been put in place. The sessions discussed the important practical steps, operational elements and governance rules that participants may need to consider for legislation, when establishing a new statutory entity that is fit for purpose, based on comparative best practices.

The group exercises on each day of the workshop provided an opportunity for participants to engage with the training material and to apply the knowledge and tools gained during the workshop in a collaborative environment. Participants had also expressed the relevance and usefulness of the topics covered for their daily work.

The final workshop will be held during the fourth quarter of 2022. This series of workshops has been developed as part of the German Federal Foreign Office funded project, Stabilising the Rule of Law by Supporting the Reform Agenda of the Republic of Maldives”.