The Government has promised businesses savings of as much as £2m through a newly launched action plan to slash red tape.
In an announcement yesterday, the Prime Minister Tony Blair promised to deliver year-on-year reductions on the administrative burden of regulation to benefit businesses, public services and the voluntary sector.
More than 500 detailed initiatives across all government departments could slash administrative costs by 25% by 2010, he claimed.
The Government also plans to upgrade its website so that ideas to simplify red tape may be suggested by the public.
But the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has reacted with caution.
John Walker, FSB national policy chairman, said: "There have been too many false dawns on red tape in the past that have not met the reality on the ground facing our members. For the sake of the UK economy and hard working small business owners, we very much hope this initiative will work."
TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber added: "Promises of an arbitrary yet precise cut of 25% in something that is impossible to measure runs the risk of undermining the case for regulation and feeding red tape myths."
By Catherine Bennion-Pedley