From my time in Health I know that choice empowers people lives.
Our aim, during our Presidency in the next six months will be to lead this challenge, to show that Europe can function in a mature and responsible way, to start delivering tangible results that show we are taking people's concerns seriously.
Some people argue that we should limit choice in favour of good local services. My response is simple: why should we assume those two concepts are mutually exclusive?
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.
Road testing the effects of regulation on European business must become second nature to the European Union.
And, in the past, it has been all too easy for legislators to load costs onto business in order to meet broader social goals. And costs for business means costs for consumers.
More than 50% of significant new regulations that impact on business in the UK now emanate from the EU.
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.
Western Europe GDP per capita - not taking into account the new accession counties - was lower in 2001 relative to that of the US than any time since the 1960's.
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.
At the heart of these challenges lies the question of how the institutions of the European Union make laws, the types of laws they pass and the effectiveness with which those laws are implemented on civil society and the economy.
But we can turn challenges into opportunities if we look outwards to the realities of the global economy and modernise our internal institutions in ways that will equip Europe to meet that challenge and create confidence amongst the public.
It is also right that we continue to consult with front line workers and the public to ensure that targets are reasonable and achievable, that measurement regimes are proportionate and that the targets take full account of the other reforms that are under way.
Greater personal choice, individually tailored services, stronger local accountability, greater efficiency - these are all central to the new direction of travel we have set for our public services.
My view is that targets, properly constructed and applied across public services have been fundamental to past successes and will be an essential part of sustaining progress into the future.