Business asked to help enforcement of regulation reforms

Industry bodies are to be invited to bid to help run a ground breaking initiative that puts driving the reform of regulatory enforcement in the hands of business.

Announcing the proposal, Business Minister Michael Fallon said that Business Focus on Enforcement will allow industry groups such as trade associations to challenge problems like duplicated paperwork, inconsistent advice or unhelpful guidance and present the case for change directly to regulators and ministers – who will be required to respond to the evidence industry presents.

To ensure that lack of resources does not prevent any business group with a good case from applying, groups will have the opportunity to apply for a government grant of up to £4,000 per project, to cover up to half the cost to a business group of running the 6-week reviews. Review teams will be supported throughout the process by government officials.

Minister Michael Fallon said:

“We want regulators to become part of our push for growth by helping law-abiding firms meet their obligations quickly and efficiently. Putting reputable private sector experts in the driving seat to identify where reform is needed will help us achieve improvements for business without compromising standards.”

The current Focus on Enforcement initiative, launched in 2012, has successfully challenged poor implementation and enforcement of regulation and secured valuable reforms for business in areas including chemicals, ports and coastal development, fire safety and small food manufacturers – but is entirely run by civil servants. Business Focus on Enforcement will test whether better results and reforms can be gained from giving industry a far greater role in identifying issues and driving reform in their sectors.

The bidding process is open from Monday 10 March 2014 and all bid applications must be received by 5pm on Monday 7 April 2014.


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