A business lobby It is a group of people who work to exert pressure on the political and public administration decisions of a nation. These groups are financed by usually transnational companies, which seek more favorable legislation for their economic exercise within that country or to favor specific groups in society.
Usually, the word “lobby” is taken as a derogatory term and many times it is considered as a practice that must be eradicated or that has an illegal character. However, in the European Union, pressure groups are regulated through a public registry established in 2008, in order to increase the transparency of their operation.
Despite the bad concept that is had of them, some pressure groups are usually harmless and are related to beneficial issues for our daily lives (tourism, banking services, consumers, anti-tobacco companies, even the Catholic Church and unions are considered groups of pressure for its form of organization and operation).
What is a business lobby?
It is a group of people grouped together and working together in order to direct certain decisions of some institution of the public administration, making them favorable to the interests that the group represents.
Gathering to exert pressure on the decisions of a politician or institution, is considered by many as an illegal activity, but far from that, it has been an important way for many politicians to know the immediate effects of their decisions and come closer to understanding the needs or disagreements of a sector based on a certain decision.
For this reason and to remove a bit of the negative stigma that weighs on them, the EU has regulated their operation, establishing a registry that invites transparency. In Spain there are almost a thousand lobbies, and one of them is the Catholic Church. Due to this registration, MEPs are obliged to report their meetings with these groups.
How does it work?
Almost 100% of the laws passed are influenced by lobbies, not only in economic and business matters, but in different aspects of life in society.
The job of a lobbyist is primarily public relations. They use different techniques to influence the decisions of legislators, in favor of the interests of the group they represent. They know how to address politicians and win favors from their team members, as well as being familiar with the nation’s legislative process.
Their interests are presented as of general interest, getting involved in meetings with legislators to send them proposals, investigations, make them understand different problems and negative effects that a certain law under discussion can cause.
Thus, they reach agreements that can be much more beneficial for all parties involved, without underestimating the importance of the state. In general, almost the entire legal framework of nations has historically been subject to lobbying pressure.
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Also, you may find it interesting to watch this documentary about lobbies: