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Online forum targets retail red tape

Prime Minister David Cameron and Business Secretary Vince Cable unveiled a new website today where retailers and members of the public are able to suggest ways in which red tape can be reduced.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Online forum targets retail red tape

The website is part of the Red Tape Challenge campaign and will focus on the retail sector for the first phase.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “The retail sector is a key part of our economy and essential to driving private sector-led growth. It also has to deal with hundreds of different regulations covering everything from employment law and health and safety through to consumer protection and the sale of offensive weapons.

He continued, “I urge you to visit the website and take a few minutes to tell us the regulations you deal with on a daily basis. This is your chance to make sure that consumers are properly protected from unscrupulous traders or give us the evidence we need to remove the unnecessary bureaucracy that stops your business from growing.”

Prime Minister David Cameron said, "Where regulation is well-designed and proportionate, it should stay. But it is hard to believe that we need government regulations on issues such as ice-cream van musical jingles. That's why I want us to be the first government in modern history to leave office having reduced the overall burden of regulation, rather than increasing it.”

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) said it was pleased the Government is putting its promises on reduced regulation into action and would be getting to work providing feedback on which measures should be scrapped, and identifying any missed opportunities.

Tom Ironside, the BRC’s  director of business and regulation said, "After all the promises which have been made about reducing the burden of regulation on businesses, this is a good start. But it won't be enough only to remove the trivial rules which affect a handful of businesses.”

The BRC said the clear-out of old rules must be accompanied by a commitment on keeping new regulations to a minimum and added that the government could prove its good intentions by reducing the impact of major new burdens being introduced for retailers, such as the supermarket adjudicator and tobacco display ban.

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