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Last Updated: Monday, 24 November, 2003, 20:02 GMT
Brown battles against EU red tape
Gordon Brown
Mr Brown was outlining his latest warning to the EU
Chancellor Gordon Brown has called on Brussels to sweep aside "wasteful" regulations which are threatening businesses in the European Union.

He urged European finance ministers to make 2004 the year they take action to get rid of unnecessary red tape.

Mr Brown was speaking at a business conference in London organised by the Wall Street Journal.

Earlier this month the chancellor warned EU finance ministers to rule out any plans for tax harmonisation.

New initiative

In his speech on Monday, Mr Brown said: "I am proposing to finance minister colleagues that in the year 2004 a European-wide push against wasteful regulation forms a central part of our economic reform agenda.

"In this new initiative - where I believe there is a willingness of member states to cooperate - I believe the two European Councils - the Dutch Presidency summit of December 2004 and the British Summit of December 2005 - should be summits that sweep aside wasteful regulation.

"And in the next two years every proposed regulation should be put to the costs test, then the jobs test and then the 'is it really necessary' test.

"Existing regulations should be put to the same tests," Mr Brown added.

France escapes budget sanction
04 Nov 03  |  Business
Brown back for tax battle
04 Nov 03  |  Politics

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