Overview and context
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Nationally Determined Contribution (UNFCCC website)
As established by the 1949 National Constitution, legislative power in Costa Rica is unicameral. The National Assembly is constituted of 57 Members of the Parliament – MPs directly elected for a single four-year term without the possibility of direct re-election. The last elections were held in February 2014 and the next election is scheduled for 2018). The proposal of a piece of law can be initiated by the Executive, the Legislature and directly by citizens. Popular initiative requires the endorsement of a minimum of 5% of the electorate and should not address fiscal issues, taxation, loans and other administrative acts.
The law-making process entails two readings at the National Assembly, before the approved proposal is submitted for the final appraisal of the Executive.
Once passed by the National Assembly, proposed laws are revised by the Executive and require the sanction of the President of the Republic. The President has 10 days to request modifications to the text or veto the proposal. If the Assembly discusses and adopts all requirements of the Executive, the amended law is then in general sanctioned by the President. Once approved by the Assembly and sanctioned by the President, a law enters into force at the indicated date or 10 days after its publication in the Official Gazette.