Regulators told to put growth before red tape

REGULATORS such as the Health & Safety Executive will have to consider whether their actions harm economic growth as part of a “no-nonsense approach” to red tape.

Business minister Michael Fallon will tonight flesh out plans to force the fifty non-financial regulators – including large quangos such as the Environment Agency – to consider whether their actions undermine companies.

He will also declare victory over the gold-plating of EU regulations – the process where Whitehall officials add extra rules when implementing laws passed in Brussels.

Fallon will claim that since July 2011 there have been 88 new EU laws entered onto the UK statute book but only one attempt by a government department to shoehorn in additional red tape that would have damaged businesses.

“These reforms are not about relaxing standards. They are about changing the culture so that businesses are seen as part of the solution and enterprise is rewarded,” Fallon will tell the Centre for Policy Studies think tank.

“To give growth a boost we must support challenger businesses – the dynamic upstarts that drive innovation, exploit new technologies, and bring competition into markets. And the evidence is clear that compliance and administrative costs pose a barrier to growth or even market entry for these small firms.”

Fallon will also promise to make it easier for businesses to influence EU regulation. He was brought into the government in September with a specific brief to roll back regulations that hinder economic growth.