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Questions and answers

Aren't new bureaucratic constraints appearing all the time, contradicting the Red Tape reduction objective?

It makes sense to avoid creating new administrative burdens when we are engaged in lightening the overall constraints on companies. But this does not mean stopping all legislative activity. To pursue its task of updating and streamlining the legal body of European norms, the Commission submits all new draft legislation to impact assessments, in which possible new administrative costs are investigated, at the same time as other costs and benefits.

How does Better Regulation contribute to helping businesses in the current economic context?

The better regulation agenda is part of the Commission's effort to ensure that the regulatory framework helps to stimulate entrepreneurship and innovation, allows businesses to compete more effectively and to exploit fully the potential of the internal market. In doing so, it contributes to growth and job creation while maintaining high standards of social, environmental, health and consumer protection. The European Economic Recovery plan stressed that in the current context of economic and financial difficulties, with growing pressure on businesses and on households, the quality of the regulatory environment is more important than ever before. The measures to reduce administrative burdens already presented or announced by the Commission represent possible savings in excess of €30 billion.

Why does the Action Programme not address administrative burdens on citizens?

The Action Programme launched by the Commission focuses on the reduction on burdens on business to strengthen competiveness and contribute to the Lisbon strategy for growth and jobs.

Accordingly, the baseline measurement that took place in the Member States is limited to reporting obligations imposed on business and not on citizens, which would require a completely different exercise. And burdens for citizens arise predominantly from national legislation.

In its impact assessments on new proposals, the Commission will assess - where relevant - the impact of the proposal on citizens.

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