A new approach to proposed laws and regulations will be enforced by the "reducing regulation committee", to be chaired by business secretary, Vince Cable. Regulations which have been inherited from the previous government will be scrutinised with a view to reducing regulations that are stifling the growth of small business.

As reported in the last edition of Bite Size, the government was considering a "one-in one-out system" with regards to regulation in an effort to ease the legislative burden on employers. The government has now announced details of its new approach, which will be implemented from 1 September 2010.

The new approach will mean that new regulations that impose costs on business will only be introduced if current regulations with an equivalent cost are identified to be removed. The government is also reviewing specific areas of burdensome regulation such as employment law in an effort to reduce the amount of red tape for employers.

The new approach will initially apply to domestic legislation, but the government intends to include EU law in due course. In the meantime, Ministers will take a 'rigorous approach' to EU regulation by engaging earlier in the Brussels policy process and taking strong cross-government negotiating lines. It remains to be seen how this will impact on employment law in the future.