Reacting to reports that the Prime Minister is re-considering the implementation of the Agency Workers Directive set for 1st October 2011, Dr Adam Marshall, Director of Policy at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said:

  

“The BCC first wrote to Coalition ministers in June 2010 to warn them that the Agency Workers Directive (AWD) regulations were gold-plated and needed to be re-written. 

“We have since made clear proposals to the government for simple changes to the regulations around pay, holidays and job comparisons that would save companies hundreds of millions of pounds without undermining the spirit of the directive – which currently stands to cost business £1.6bn each year to implement.

  “With one in five businesses (21%) who currently use the directive telling the BCC that they would hire fewer agency workers after its implementation, the implications for the economy and jobs are significant. The government must urgently clarify whether it intends to delay implementation of the directive to spare businesses even greater uncertainty and potential costs.”