Officials from European construction organisations are to meet the government in an attempt to protect the industry from the effects of the European Union Services Directive, also known as the Bolkestein directive.

The European Federation of Building and Woodworkers has held talks with national construction organisations and hopes to meet the British government in the next few weeks to push for changes to the directive, which was debated at the European summit last month.

The directive allows a company from one EU country to work in any other without adopting that country’s employment conditions. Industry representatives, including unions UCATT and T&G, are concerned that it will encourage firms to employ workers from states with less stringent standards.

An industry source involved in the talks said: “Changes need to be made so that this directive doesn’t result in the total dumping of the poorest companies on countries such as the UK. It would undermine all of the working rule agreements currently in place.”