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Exploring the risks of EU mis-regulation with Sparks e-cigarettes

The EU Tobacco Products Directive looks set to seriously damage the development of the e-cigarette industry. That is likely to diminish the prospects of helping people quit smoking and lead far healthier lives. Researchers from University College London (UCL) have said that: For every million smokers who switched to an e-cigarette we could expect a reduction of more than 6000 premature deaths in the UK each year, even in the event that e-cigarette use carries a significant risk of fatal diseases, and […]

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Draft Deregulation Bill to save millions each year

The Government recently published its draft Deregulation Bill to remove unnecessary bureaucracy. It will amend 182 different pieces of legislation and should make savings for public bodies, businesses and individuals worth a minimum of £62 million per year. This is paltry compared to the £4 billion budget of relevant regulators, but I suppose it is better than progress in the other direction. The Bill will: Free business from red tape, including by: Scrapping health & safety rules for self-employed workers in low […]

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Motorcycle rider licensing must be part of our EU renegotiation

The issue of rider licensing is still causing alarm among motorcyclists. I have been contacted by riders and businesses who are concerned about the complications that the European Union has introduced to the British motorcycle licence through unwelcome directives. This issue is important because as well as being a great leisure and tourism activity, more and more people are using bikes to get to work as a cheaper form of transport than trains or buses, plus of course motorcycles are […]

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Big Society: Now making it easier to run a charity

Building on the Big Society idea, the Government has introduced a policy that will make it considerably easier to set up and run a charity. The option of creating Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIO) has been established to make this a reality. Previously, most charities were unincorporated and the trustees could be held personally liable for any debts of the charity. In order to overcome this, charities used to registered as companies with limited liability, but this is often time consuming, bureaucratic […]

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EU-HSE farce update

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On 4 Dec, I explained how a regulatory farce between the EU and the HSE was wasting millions of taxpayers’ money while costing business millions in lost sales. I have now had an update. Thankfully, the Secretary of State has understood the position. Iain Duncan Smith has given instructions which should see this dealt with promptly. The next stage is to deal with two crucial issues: why the HSE couldn’t see the problem they were causing in the first place and […]

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The EU vs the HSE – another expensive regulatory farce

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Yesterday, I heard from a local businessman about the kafkaesque nightmare that has been inflicted upon his industry by the EU – made far, far worse by our own bureaucracy. The firm manufactures water-disinfection systems used in hospitals and other health facilities. The EU has just imposed another round of over-regulation on that particular industry. The new set of rules — the Biocidal Products Regulations — are flawed but what concerns me is the new ban on the use of copper as a […]

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The EU: adding dreary bureaucracy, aggravation and expense to the joy of motorcycling

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Tonight, I led a rather early adjournment debate on motorcycle rider licensing, where the EU has added to the joy of motorcyling, the dreariness, aggravation and expense of capricious bureaucracy. I was grateful to Norman Baker for answering the debate in the place of Mike Penning, who has just moved to the Northern Ireland office, after stoically defending riders rights and liberties as Roads Minister. Licensing is not the first battle that bikers have had to fight against the EU. […]

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Washington Post: Britain’s continental drift away from the European Union

Via the Washington Post: LONDON — Like so many others in this fiercely independent island nation, Steve Baker, a dashing English engineer, is fed up with the long hand of the European Union in British life. The E.U., he said, has meddled for years in Britain’s legal affairs and labor laws. But this time the 27-nation body had gone too far by interfering with his pride and joy: the retrofitted KTM 950 motorcycle he rides on the country lanes of […]

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EU motion of the day: Recognition of Professional Qualifications

Via today’s Order of Business, which is dominated by Lords reform, we glimpse the battle against disproportionate central regulation of professions:  8 RECOGNITION OF PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS                                     [No debate] Mr John Hayes That this House takes note of European Union Document No. 18899/11 and Addenda 1 to 3, relating to a Draft Directive amending Directive 2005/36/EC on the recognition of professional qualifications and regulation on administrative co-operation through the electronic Internal Market Information System; and supports the Government’s aims of reducing […]

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Cutting Red Tape: the Government’s Progress

The Government claim progress on cutting red tape for businesses. They have provided the ticker, right, which gives a running update of the red tape scrapped. Under the previous Government, the equivalent of six new regulations every working day were passed, or over 1,500 in a year. In 2011, the Government cut that flow to 89 measures of which just 19 imposed any cost to business. In addition the Government have: Capped the cost of new regulations, through the One […]

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