Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 23 August 2014

Self-employed workers to be exempt from H&S legislation

Chancellor George Osborne
Chancellor George Osborne

Self-employed workers are to be exempt from health and safety laws under a series of measures to be unveiled this week aimed at breathing life into Britain's flagging economy.

It is understood the Queen's Speech on Wednesday, setting out the Government's legislative programme for the new parliamentary session, will include a series of bills designed to generate growth. A deregulation bill will mean that the self-employed whose activities do not pose a risk to others will no longer be subject to health and safety legislation.

It will also remove the requirement for issuing motor insurance certificates, moving to a system where the information is held online – a move ministers estimate will save business £33m a year.

There will be a bill to take forward Chancellor George Osborne's Budget commitment to cut employers' national insurance contributions for small businesses, which the Treasury says will save firms £1.7bn a year by 2017-18.

Infrastructure development will be supported with an energy bill intended to encourage investment in a new generation of power stations while also ensuring consumers get the best deal.

Intellectual property rights will be modernised in a bill which will enact the agreement for part of the new European unified patent court, to be hosted in London, estimated to be worth £200m a year to the economy.

Ministers believe reforming legislation will save the economy £4bn over 10 years in more effective protection of consumer rights.

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