Construction Confederation chairman Alan Crane was on Wednesday due to meet defence minister John Spellar to discuss Ministry of Defence plans to introduce supply-chain contracting.

Crane, who wrote to Spellar asking for clarification on the plans late last year, was expected to be given fuller details of an initiative that has concerned some smaller contractors.

Spellar was expected to explain that the Construction Industry Research and Information Association will be holding workshops on the initiative for contractors' chief executives this spring.

The Building Research Establishment will also organise workshops for middle managers such as project managers and estimators.

The MOD has commissioned a firm of solicitors to draw up a special contract for the initiative. First drafts of this and a new project selection procedure are expected to be completed by the end of January. However, officials have encountered some difficulty in getting the services to draw up packages of work for supply-chain contracting.