A new ‘one-in, one-out’ system of regulation begins from 1 September 2010. The new rules will mean that ministers who seek to introduce new regulations to impose costs on business or the third sector, will have to identify current regulations with an equivalent value that can be removed.
The initiative is part of the Government’s drive to tackle what it calls ‘unnecessary government interference and red tape’.
The new rules will initially apply to domestic legislation but ministers intend to expand the system. To support the new measures the Government has agreed a set of principles of regulation that Government departments must apply when considering new regulations impacting upon business, social enterprises, individuals and community groups. An independent regulatory policy committee will also vet any proposals whilst the public will be given the opportunity to tell Government which legislation should be scrapped, through the new Your Freedom website.
Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “Together these measures represent a fundamental shift in how Whitehall has traditionally used regulation as a way to command and control. We have to move quickly delivering credible and meaningful reductions in the burdens that hinder hard-pressed businesses and charities. We have to create a common sense approach in the way we think about new laws.
“By ensuring regulation becomes a last resort, we will create an environment that frees business from the burden of red tape, helping to create the right conditions for recovery and growth in the UK economy.”
The Government is also looking to end the so-called ‘gold-plating’ of EU regulations so that when European rules are transposed into UK law it is done without putting British business at a competitive disadvantage to other European-based companies.