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Our objective must therefore be to ensure EU better regulation contributes towards delivering a modern European Union which relentlessly focuses on building a dynamic and innovative economy equipped to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
Our aim, during our Presidency in the next six months will be to lead this challenge, to show that Europe can function in a mature and responsible way, to start delivering tangible results that show we are taking people's concerns seriously.
My view is that targets, properly constructed and applied across public services have been fundamental to past successes and will be an essential part of sustaining progress into the future.
More than 50% of significant new regulations that impact on business in the UK now emanate from the EU.
It is also right that we continue to consult with front line workers and the public to ensure that targets are reasonable and achievable, that measurement regimes are proportionate and that the targets take full account of the other reforms that are under way.
If we took Chaucer's writings at face value, we'd have to conclude he was a complete drip.
Here in the UK the government has decided to accept the recommendations of the Better Regulation Task Force to measure and make targeted reductions in the administrative costs - the red tape costs - that regulations impose on business.
Having decisions made not in midnight deals but in the light of objective evidence and after consulting those who will be affected should itself provide some reassurance that the EU is trying to reform itself.
Greater personal choice, individually tailored services, stronger local accountability, greater efficiency - these are all central to the new direction of travel we have set for our public services.
From my time in Health I know that choice empowers people lives.
For too long nurses have been undervalued, restricted in what they could do, with too few career opportunities in clinical practice. For far too long, nurses have endured a pay system that has held them back - both professionally as well as financially.
For many Europeans the next decade looks to be filled with threats rather than opportunities.
But we need to show that the EU can modernise itself, can adapt to the needs of its citizens, can take their views into account. That will be our ambition for the UK Presidency.
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