Government blitz on red tape welcomed
GOVERNMENT plans to redouble a blitz on red tape have been welcomed by Nottinghamshire's biggest business organisation.
Business minister Michael Fallon has unveiled a 'one in, two out rule' which means that from January every new regulation that imposes a new financial burden on firms must be offset by reductions in red tape that will save double those costs.
The new rules will apply to all UK regulations affecting businesses and voluntary organisations, with Mr Fallon claiming an existing 'one in, one out' measure has already driven "profound culture change" across Whitehall.
He said: "Every year businessmen and women still spend too much time and money complying with government regulations, when they should be developing and growing their businesses. We are impatient for growth and I'm determined to remove this brake on aspiration.
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"That's why we are upping the pace. Our new target will require radical thinking right across Whitehall. It will require policymakers to make tough choices, and to think hard about how to get government off the backs of hard-working and hard-pressed businesses."
George Cowcher, the chief executive of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce, said it was a positive move but that more could be done.
He said: "This rule will only apply to the regulations that are currently 'in scope' of the system, which means that a significant number of regulations – including those from the EU – are exempt from this process.
"The scope of this system should be reviewed to ensure that all relevant regulations are included, as this will help to reduce burdensome red tape that prevents businesses from growing, innovating and creating employment.
"Government also needs to deliver on its pledge to take a more rigorous approach to tackling EU regulations and gold plating, so that when European rules become UK law, they don't put British business at a competitive disadvantage."
Government says recent reductions in business red tape have included:
Giving over 100,000 more firms the flexibility to decide whether or not their company accounts should be audited
Removing regulatory burdens and costs from hundreds of venues including pubs and clubs, making it easier to stage live music
Removing legislation that dictates the location and design of no smoking signs in workplaces
It claims a package of employment tribunal reforms will deliver £40 million of savings per year to employers.
From April 2013, thousands of businesses will also be exempt from proactive health and safety inspections.
The Chamber is currently surveying businesses about which regulations impact their competitiveness and also about ways to improve engagement with local regulators.
Businesses can take the survey online in two minutes at http://svy.mk/W7v1x4.