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Government ends ‘gold-plating’ of European Regulations

Government ends ‘gold-plating’ of European Regulations

Secretary of State for Business, and Chair of the Reducing Regulation Committee, Vince Cable has set out a series of new principles that the Government will use when introducing European measures into UK law. These will end so-called “gold-plating” so that British businesses are not put at a disadvantage relative to their European competitors.

The key to the new measures will be the principle of copying out the text of European directives directly into UK law. The direct ‘copy out’ principle will mean that British interpretations of European law, “gold plating”, are not unfairly restricting British companies.

The key elements of the principles are:

Work on the implementation of an EU directive should start immediately after agreement is reached in Brussels, giving businesses more chance to influence the approach.

Early transposition of EU regulations will be avoided except where there are compelling reasons for early implementation, ensuring British businesses are not put at a disadvantage to their European competitors.

European directives will normally be directly copied into UK legislation, except where it would adversely affect UK interests e.g. by putting UK businesses at a competitive disadvantage.

A statutory duty will be placed on ministers to conduct a review of domestic legislation implementing a European directive every five years.

February 2011

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