Select Committee on European Union Thirteenth Report

Letter from the Chairman of Sub-Committee B to Patricia Hewitt MP, Minister for Small Business and E-Commerce, Department of Trade and Industry


Thank you for your letter of 18 February.

  I hope you are right when you say that you believe there is less between us on the issue of "gold plating" than may be apparent. The Sub-Committee is content to await the revision of the Government's Better Regulation Guide, but would be grateful to learn when this will be completed and whether or not we might have a copy so that we can see how our concern has been accommodated.

  Our former Specialist Adviser also drew our attention to the Government's response on the issue of taxation. The Sub-Committee feels that the Government has been less than enthusiastic on this point.

  Allied to it is the issue of trading within the European Single Market. Internal Market Ministers agreed a resolution at the Internal Market Council on 28 October 1999 which set out action to improve mutual recognition, but, as I am sure you know, one or two Member States are in no hurry to harmonise and the Sub-Committee feels that this is a subject which they might wish to revisit later to see how much practical progress, if any, has been made.

  I am copying this letter to Lord Tordoff, the Chairman of the Select Committee.

2 March 2000

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