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Company red-tape in spotlight

26 Jan 2012

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has revealed that companies of all shapes and sizes are to be asked for their views on how to tackle unnecessary bureaucracy in company and commercial law.

For the next three weeks, the latest phase of the Red Tape Challenge will focus on more than 120 company law regulations, guidance and enforcement processes that businesses deal with on a daily basis.

The campaign is seeking suggestions as to how regulations can be improved, simplified or abolished, including in relation to:

  • internal workings of companies and partnerships – in particular rules on shares and share capital, requirement to hold information at business premises and rules on meetings and resolutions;
  • accounts and returns – the content, form and auditing requirements of financial accounts and other reports;
  • business names; and
  • disclosure of company information.

Business Minister, Edward Davey said:

“We want to have a flexible regulatory framework within company law to allow firms to compete and grow successfully. The Red Tape Challenge is a great way for the public and firms to tell us what is a nuisance or gets in the way of doing business effectively.

“The feedback we receive will allow us to build on the Companies Act 2006 to look at areas such as the audit regime to assist small and medium sized companies as well as the approach to filing documents at Companies House. I am open to new ideas to simplify, merge or discard additional rules that will enable firms to do business with more confidence.”

The Government has today published a discussion paper to coincide with the start of the spotlight period, seeking views on proposals and calling for further suggestions for improvements.

The results of the Red Tape Challenge (further details of which can be found at www.redtapechallenge.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/) for company and commercial law will be published later this year.

Further details of this initiative can be found at www.redtapechallenge.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/themehome/company-commercial-law/.

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