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EU Commission announces further plans to make EU law «lighter»

Commission Communication “REFIT – Fit for Growth” announces detailed policy plans to further streamline EU secondary legislation


On 2 October 2013 the EU Commission published a Communication entitled “REFIT – Fit for Growth”, in which it continues to mark out its plans for ensuring that EU legislation is fit for purpose for the future.

The Communication sets out to detail, on a policy-by-policy basis, the areas in which the Commission will seek to take action to simplify or withdraw EU legislation, ease the burden on businesses and facilitate implementation in the Member States.

The move serves to reinforce similar concerted efforts made by the Commission over the past few years to reduce EU regulatory burdens, in line with its “Regulatory Fitness and Performance Programme” (REFIT). Since 2005, over 600 initiatives aimed at simplifying the legal framework have been carried out, along with the repeal of some 5000 EU legal acts.

The new initiative will seek to build on this by presenting new legislative initiatives and proposals for amendments targeting simplification and burden reduction, withdrawing a number of pending proposals, and outlining new cross-policy horizontal actions. A “scoreboard” will also be put in place to track results.

The move will no doubt be welcomed particularly by those Member States concerned with the issues of residual or dormant competences in a number of areas of shared competence.