IoD calls for freeze on red tape hindering UK businesses

Red
tape is still tying down UK businesses with “petty rules and regulations,
incompetence and misplaced assistance” hindering expansion and job creation,
according to the Institute of Directors (IoD).

James
Walsh, head of regulatory affairs at the IoD, called on the Government to
implement a freeze on employment regulation.

A
survey of 45 businesses found cases of unnecessary and costly red tape and
burdensome bureaucracy across all facets of business activity from employment
law, to planning, to health and safety rules.

"Employment
regulations crop up time and again in this red tape dossier,” Walsh said. “The
Government should consider giving business a time-out until at least 2010
before it presses ahead with further extensions of employee rights on issues
such as flexible working, maternity pay and parental leave."

The
IoD highlighted three examples of red tape hindering UK businesses:

 – A Hertfordshire building firm ordered to
install a speed hump within a much-needed housing development by the local
council, and then charged £12,000 for the council to ‘supervise’. Actual cost
of constructing speed hump – £3,000.

 – A Lincolnshire manufacturer forced to
replace equipment to comply with latest EU standards, but told by supplier that
replacement equipment not as good as that which has been replaced.

 – A West Midlands exporter now has to liaise
with its local Business Link when negotiating overseas contracts. Previously
done directly through British Embassy in the country concerned. Business Link
charges for this service and the extra layer of bureaucracy slows down whole
process.

By Daniel Thomas

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