And overall the cost of regulation on businesses in the UK since 1998 has risen to Â£65.99 billion, up by more than Â£10 billion on the figure for 2007.
The findings by the British Chambers of Commerceâ€™s Burdens Barometer have prompted renewed calls from chambers around the country for a review of legislation in order to reduce the red tape burden on businesses.
For the first time, there are regulations in this yearâ€™s barometer that produce an annual saving for business. The Fire Regulatory Reform Order (regulation 77 in the BCCâ€™s Barometer), for example, has provided a saving to business of Â£67 million, cutting the cumulative total by 0.1 per cent.
Yet UK businesses are going to be hit with an additional Â£10.4 billion cost of regulation every year unless action is taken, said a BCC spokesman.
Two of the BCCâ€™s ten heaviest burdens in the barometer that chambers of commerce believe that government should review are:
â€¢ The Data Protection Act: according to government figures, this has so far cost business more than Â£7 billion. A BCC spokesman said: â€œGiven that it is nearly a decade old, it would be a perfect candidate for post-Implementation review.â€
â€¢ The Flexible Working (Procedural Requirements) Regulations 2002: so far, these have cost business Â£1.588 billion since 2002. â€œGiven that the Walsh Review on flexible working has already started it would be sensible to revisit regulations, which are accruing costs at a rate of Â£296 million per annum,â€ the spokesman added.
Richard Lacy, chief executive of the Chamber representing businesses in Bedfordshire and Luton, said: â€œThe success of the governmentâ€™s drive for better regulation must be judged on the extent to which the UKâ€™s regulatory burden has been reduced.
â€œOn this basis, the governmentâ€™s record does not stand up to scrutiny. The BCCâ€™s Burdens Barometer figure now stands at almost Â£66 billion compared to a figure of Â£10 billion in 2001 when we first compiled it.
â€œInitiatives without delivery will do nothing to help keep British businesses competitive. We desperately need an impact assessment system that will challenge the need for regulation and a parliamentary process established that provides real independent oversight.â€