Waging war on red tape...

Sheffield Chamber of Commerce has joined a national campaign to cut red tape and make it easier for businesses to grow.

There are more than 21,000 regulations in the UK today and the Government has established a Red Tape Challenge to help reduce the burden on companies.

A new consultation website - www.redtapechallenge.cabinetoffice.gov.uk – has been launched to help businesses get in touch to identify which regulations are working and which are not, what should be scrapped, what should be saved and what should be simplified. Every few weeks regulations affecting a specific sector will be available to view and discuss on the site, as well as those that affect all companies, from rules on equality to employment.

This includes health and safety (from June 30), manufacturing (July 14), healthy living and social care (July 27), media and creative services (Aug 11), environment (Sept 1), employment (Sept 15), children’s services (Sept 29), rail and merchant shipping (Oct 13) and utilities and energy (Oct 27).

Ministers will then have three months to evaluate which regulations they want to keep and why. However, the default presumption will be that burdensome regulations will go. If Ministers want to keep them, they have to make a very good case for them to stay.

Richard Wright, executive director of Sheffield Chamber of Commerce, said: “This is a real opportunity for businesses across the Sheffield City Region to get involved and have a say on the red tape which is hampering their growth.

“We urge everyone to grasp this chance and help enforce change for the benefit of the local economy. Good regulation is a good thing, but too much can be harmful to business.

“When people are confronted by a raft of regulations many begin to think they shouldn’t bother.

“If you own a shop, run a small business or a volunteer and don’t agree with the rules in place, we would encourage you to visit the website and contribute to the debate.”

You can follow the Red Tape Challenge on Twitter via @RedTapeChall.