A future Conservative government would slash the size of the Department of Trade and Industry by more than three quarters in a bid to reduce red tape.
The radical plan was unveiled by shadow deregulation secretary John Redwood and shadow industry secretary Stephen O’Brien,
The two politicians said the DTI issued more rules and regulations than any other department of state and needed to be restructured if British businesses were to set free from their red tape burden.
As part of what it calls its “Conservative Value for Money Action Plan”, the number of staff would be cut from more than 4,000 to 850.
The responsibilities of those remaining would be to champion business and business deregulation.
There would be two core teams, one to deregulate and one to minimise the effect of European regulations, said Redwood and O’Brien.
O'Brien added: “Labour’s so-called ‘better regulation’ has meant more regulation. Government policy and administrative creep have led to a deluge of over-regulation. Businesses large and small have made it clear that the DTI is moving in the wrong direction.”