"REFIT - Fit for growth" – Commission takes ambitious next steps to make EU law lighter
EU laws in many areas are essential to ensure fair and equal opportunities for businesses and consumers and to protect the rights of citizens. At the same time, EU laws are often accused of putting too many costly requirements on businesses and of interfering too much in citizens' daily lives.
In response to these concerns, the Commission has made concerted efforts over recent years to streamline legislation and reduce regulatory burdens.
President Barroso said in his State of the Union address on 11 September that "the EU needs to be big on big things and smaller on small things– something we may occasionally have neglected in the past".
74% of Europeans believe that the EU generates too much red tape.
What has the Commission done in recent years?
On 2 October, the Commission took a further important step to make EU law lighter and "fit for purpose": in a Communication, the Commission sets out, by policy area, where it will take further action to simplify or withdraw EU laws, reduce the burden on businesses and make sure that implementation of EU laws is becoming easier.
The Communication also includes the results of a screening of all EU legislation and defines a wide range of actions which are either already being implemented or which are proposed to the Council and the European Parliament. In addition, the Commission announced that it will publish a scoreboard to track progress at European and national level.
Examples of administrative burden reduction measures
Initiatives by policy area
This exercise is at the heart of the Commission's Regulatory Fitness and Performance Programme (REFIT).
Ensuring that EU legislation is "fit for purpose" is essential for putting Europe back on track towards more growth and jobs.
This new, comprehensive review of EU law provides a pragmatic outlook for the future, just a few months ahead of the EU elections in May 2014.
- and [123 KB] on the results and next steps on regulatory fitness and performance [151 KB]
- Press release
- Other examples of how the Commission is making EU law lighter
- More on smart regulation