We must seek to persuade member states and institutions that better regulation in Europe does not mean cutting health and safety in the workplace, nor does it mean dismantling social standards.
As Tony Blair has made clear, our fundamental challenge is how to make Europe work better.
The Civil Service is a vital economic asset to the UK – firstly, in the way it creates a framework for excellence in service delivery and secondly, in how it helps organise the best way to deliver modern public services on which both businesses and individuals depend.
This call for a new culture is not a new idea.
There is no such thing as free regulation.
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.
If we took Chaucer’s writings at face value, we’d have to conclude he was a complete drip.
So that we focus not on competing visions for Europe but on what Europe can do to improve economic growth, to give us a cleaner environment, to create more jobs, to make us more secure.
Yet in order to make sure the European social model keeps up with the pace of economic change that is now necessary, the EU must embrace a new approach to lawmaking.
One friend in a lifetime is much; two are many; three are hardly possible. Friendship needs a certain parallelism of life, a community of thought, a rivalry of aim.