Cutting Through Red Tape | IEA Podcast

On this episode of the IEA Podcast, Matthew Lesh, Public Policy & Communications Director, is joined by Tom Clougherty, Executive Director at the Institute of Economic Affairs, to discuss the government’s recent announcement on efforts to slash red tape.

This week’s question: Is the government finally deregulating?

Tom shares his insights on the government’s 10-point plan to cut regulation, including measures like issuing new regulations only when “absolutely necessary” and imposing stronger growth duties on regulators. While praising these efforts as steps in the right direction, he argues they fall short of fundamentally reshaping the regulatory landscape.

The conversation delves into the origins of Britain’s modern regulatory state, the role of institutions and incentives in driving regulation, and the cultural shift needed to truly embrace deregulation. Tom emphasises the need for structural changes, such as mandatory sunset clauses and a senior government figure responsible for regulatory liberalisation, to counterbalance the institutional pressures that often lead to over-regulation.