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Last Updated: Sunday, 23 May, 2004, 20:55 GMT 21:55 UK
Battle at work

David Brent from The Office
Trade Union leaders want more protection for workers like the fictional David Brent from The Office

One of this Government's greatest achievements is the creation of a successful, stable economy - so the Chancellor, Gordon Brown, keeps on reminding us.

The Conservatives insist that it was a Tory Government that laid the foundations.

Well perhaps suprisingly, both agree that a key element to any successful economy is a flexible workforce and light touch regulation. Business leaders also believe this is what's created strong companies and ultimately more jobs.

But the trade unions warn that tens of thousands of jobs are being lost in British factories and offices precisely because workers are not protected enough. They point with envy to countries like France and Germany where many jobs are protected by stronger employment laws.

Now the Commons Trade and Industry committee is launching an inquiry to find out whether the UK's economy is Too flexible? Paul Wilenius has been taking soundings on whether it's too easy to be sacked.

Click here to listen to Paul Wilenius report

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