In case you missed it, Open Europe Research Director Mats Persson was on the BBC Politics Show on Sunday, discussing our new research, which puts the cost of EU regulations at £106.6 billion over the past ten years.
Also on the programme were Labour MPs Gisela Stuart, and Michael Connarty, Chairman of the European Scrutiny Committee.
Mr Connarty wasn't too impressed by the findings, saying they were meaningless because "If the EU didn't exist, most of the regulations would be in law in this country anyway". He went on to say that "When it [a proposal] eventually becomes a regulation... people ignore the fact that we want it or we had it in the first place."
While it may be the case that, in some instances, EU legislation is not unwelcome, there are two important points to make here. Firstly, although the UK might have wanted a proposal originally, that doesn't necessarily mean that that would still be the case once it has made its way through the lengthy European legislative process.
Secondly, it is fundamentally important to understand where legislation has come from - otherwise how can we possibly think about attempting to de-regulate? As Gisela put it on Sunday: "I think you need to look at where legislation is made, who's responsible for what and whether it's been properly assessed of what the kind of impact and what are sometimes called the unintended consequences of legislation are, so I think to rubbish a report that just looks at the decision making process seems strange to me."
Mr Connarty may well not be interested in looking at the decision making process and understanding where legislation comes from, especially considering he voted against a Bill back in October to require Statutory Instruments to state whether they were the result of a decision made in the European Union or not.
Mr Connarty went on to suggest that if the EU did not exist, "probably 90% or more of those regulations would still exist because we need them." We are not quite sure where he has plucked this figure from.
If he finds time to read our report, he will see that about 50% of the number of regulations introduced in the UK in the last ten years originate in the EU, yet these are responsible for over 70% of the cost of regulations , suggesting that EU regulation imposes a higher burden on the UK economy than domestic legislation does. The Working Time Directive is only one example that springs to mind of an EU regulation that would not exist without the EU. If the rest of the 10% is like that one, it would be a very costly minority indeed...