The 1st of October was marked “Freedom Day” for business as regulations were relaxed over several sectors as part of the Government’s “Red Tape Challenge”. The Red Tape Challenge is an ongoing consultation process to scrap unnecessary regulation and promote economic growth.

Changes to regulations applying to Scotland include:

  • relaxing Money Laundering Regulations to benefit businesses who are at a low risk of money laundering and terrorist financing, reducing the burden of complying with the Regulations. It is anticipated that this should save firms around £3million per year and make money laundering regulation more efficient and proportionate;
  • introducing more flexibility for firms to decide the most appropriate accounting rules for them;
  • a new “Small Claims” track to reduce the cost to entrepreneurs of protecting their intellectual property rights. This new method will make it cheaper and easier to pursue smaller and more straightforward disputes; and
  • over 100,000 smaller companies being able to choose whether or not to have a statutory audit, potentially saving millions of pounds in auditing and reporting requirements.

The Government aims to scrap or reduce over 3,000 regulations to make the UK a more attractive place to set up and run a business.