Gold-plating refers to the practice of national bodies exceeding the terms of European Union directives when implementing them into national law. Concerning the effects business lobbyists argue in both directions. Some say that the government raises costs for businesses  while others depending on the concrete directive find a cost-improving effect for businesses.
In Italy, gold-plating has often been used as a device to pass through controversial measures and to ensure a lower degree of parliamentary scrutiny, particularly in periods of weak government.
EU governments committed themselves to a deregulation agenda at the Lisbon Summit in 2000, and as a consequence the European Commission has supported more maximum harmonisation measures in recent years, which effectively prohibit gold-plating.
- "Better Regulation- Simplification". European Commission. Retrieved 2008-08-13.
- "Tories pledge to cut EU red tape". BBC News. 2004-08-18. Retrieved 2008-08-13.