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Communications Act 2003

Section 7: Duty to carry out impact assessments

39.Unless the urgency of a matter makes it impracticable or inappropriate, before implementing an important proposal in connection with the performance of their functions, OFCOM must either carry out and publish their assessment of the likely impact of the proposals or publish a statement setting out their reasons for thinking that it is unnecessary for them to carry out such an assessment. A proposal is an important proposal if it would be likely to involve a major change of their activities or have a significant impact on communications businesses or the general public. OFCOM will decide the form and content of the assessment, having regard to relevant general guidance, but subsection (4) requires that the assessment must set out how the proposal would secure or further the performance of OFCOM’s general duties, or how the performance of the duties would be secured or furthered in relation to the proposals. When OFCOM publish an assessment, they must provide persons who are likely to be affected by the proposal with an opportunity to comment on it. OFCOM’s annual report must set out the assessments that have been carried out under this section and summarise the decisions taken by OFCOM in relation to proposals in respect of which impact assessments have been carried out.

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