Chancellor Gordon Brown has called on Brussels to sweep aside "wasteful" regulations which are threatening businesses in the European Union.
Mr Brown was outlining his latest warning to the EU
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.
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.