The increasing politicisation of the better regulation agenda, including REFIT, the latest initiative in this context, has led to the introduction of a rhetoric according to which any piece of legislation is deemed an obstacle to growth, competitiveness and employment, as well as particularly burdensome for SMEs. Quite apart from the criticism that can be levelled at its expensive, time-consuming, qualitatively questionable and still predominantly one-sided evaulation process, REFIT has become a real threat to the social acquis communautaire.

This policy brief describes the historical and political background of the EU's 'Regulatory Fitness and Performance' (REFIT)' programme, its mechanisms and instruments as well as challenges of this exercise in 'better regulation' for Social Europe.

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