It is clear that the responsibility of generating a robust recovery and creating wealth will fall at the feet of the business community. To this end, it is vital that the regulatory burden is treated as importantly as any other aspect of the economic environment which government can influence.

Our annual Burdens Barometer, published alongside this document, shows that the cost to businesses of complying with regulation is still growing. Furthermore, this report outlines that there is still a long way to go before Whitehall and the European institutions have got to grips with the impact of their regulatory output. Indeed, this publication looks at the government narrative related to its better regulation agenda, how the UK and EU processes are out of kilter, and Parliament’s control of the regulatory process.

However, if adopted, the recommendations made here, such as strong independent scrutiny of Impact Assessments and robust post-implementation review, will help to address these problems. Despite the need for improvement, it would be churlish to suggest that over the past few years significant progress has not been made: Impact Assessments are better; there is greater transparency of the legislative process; and, administrative burdens have been reduced.There is, however, much more to do.