Red tape strangling post-Brexit Britain


In the Media

Jamie Whyte writes in The Express

In the Media

Christopher Snowdon quoted in Asian Trader

Matthew Lesh writes for City AM

IEA Director of Public Policy and Communications Matthew Lesh has written in City AM highlighting the mounting burden of red tape holding back the economy despite pledges from successive governments to slash it post-Brexit.

Matthew wrote:

“The piles of legislation, regulation and guidance only seem to grow. Since just 2017, the regulatory burden on businesses has increased by an astonishing £22bn – and that’s just according to official government estimates that tend to viciously underestimate the actual regulatory costs.

“Meanwhile, regulators seem incapable of making decisions in a timely manner. Sam Dumitriu of Britain Remade has calculated that the time it takes for a decision on a major project grew from 17 months to 22 months between just 2012 and 2022. Perhaps that’s because the required paperwork is, frankly, extraordinary. The Jubilee Line extension, which began in 1993, called for a 400 page environmental assessment – Sizewell C required 44,000 pages.

“That’s not all. Despite the rhetoric about regulatory reduction, the government is marching in the opposite direction. From the football regulator, renters’ reform, and gambling regulation to building standards, online safety, and AI the government’s default response to every question appears to be more regulation.”

Read Matthew’s full piece here.

In the article, Matthew referenced Cutting Through, a paper published by the IEA in July 2022 arguing that cutting red tape in sectors like housing, childcare, and energy could save households up to £9,000 per year. Read more and download a copy here.