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Stoiber Group on administrative burdens in EU law: better law-making in action

Written by Stéphane Reynolds and Anita Orav
Stoiber Group on administrative burdens in EU law: better law-making in action

© European Commission, European Union, 2014

The High-Level Group on Administrative Burdens or the Stoiber Group was established in 2007 as an independent body to advise the European Commission on its planned Action Programme for administrative burden reduction (ABR) in respect of EU legislation. The latter programme set a 25 per cent reduction target by 2012, covering 13 policy areas.

On 14 October 2014, at the presentation of the group’s Final Report to then Commission President José Manuel Barroso, Mr Stoiber invited the Commission to continue its efforts to make EU law lighter, simpler and less costly . The Final Report acknowledges that there has been a recent shift in culture within the Commission and urges the Commission to go further, for example by seeking to calculate the total net cost of legislation as precisely as possible. EU member states should be tasked with indicating clearly where minimum requirements have been exceeded, with the aim of revealing any potentially unnecessary ‘gold-plating’ at national level.

Background

The Stoiber group’s work was organised in three successive rounds or ‘mandates’, and its final mandate came to an end on 31 October 2014, at the end of the five-year term of the second Barroso Commission.

As explained in detail in the Final Report, the first mandate of the Stoiber Group helped the Commission to evaluate administrative burdens on business and other stake-holders, and to shape related proposals in the Action Programme. During its second mandate, the group focused on reducing administrative burdens through the better transposition of EU laws by the 28 member states, whilst during its third mandate, the group focussed on policy towards small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in this field.

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