Regulators’ Compliance Code Cuts Red Tape

The Government’s introduction of a new code of practice yesterday should make life easier for business and the regulators that work with them.

The new Regulators’ Compliance Code, introduced yesterday, has been designed to save businesses time and money by improving the way iregulators work with them.

The new code requires regulators to take a risk-based approach, allowing compliant businesses to cut red tape. Compliant businesses face fewer inspections and less regulatory burden whilst businesses that face a higher risk of not complying with regulation will be subject to more rigorous inspections.

The result of this will mean businesses will receive better advice on how to comply with the law whilst they can expect a reduction in unnecessary inspections and paperwork.

The Regulators’ Compliance Code will affect national regulators such as the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and the Environment Agency and also local regulators such as Trading Standards, Environment Health and Fire & Rescue authorities.

Based upon the findings of March 2005’s Hampton Report ("Reducing administrative burdens: effective inspection and enforcement" – 640k PDF), where past voluntary arrangements were deemed not be working "as well as expected", the statutory risk-based approach has been well received by the businesses consulted on the code.

Shriti Vadera, Minister for Business and Competitiveness said:

"The government understands that regulation is one of the top concerns for business.

The Compliance Code requires regulators to work better with business and ease the burdens placed on those who operate within the rules.

Regulators must take a light-touch approach to companies who comply with the law and target enforcement only at those who benefit by flouting it.

This is a vital step towards delivering on our promises to cut red tape."

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