23/03/2011 03:46 PM
Under plans revealed by employment minister Chris Grayling this week, all UK regulations will be reviewed, with a view to scrapping measures that are putting an "unnecessary" burden on businesses.
Inspections to sites will also be cut by a third, as employers with good safety records will no longer face automatic health and safety inspections.
Instead 'rogue' employers putting the safety of their staff at risk will be targeted.
Responding to the news, Simon Noakes, chair of REC Construction, said: "We all agree that the first imperative is the safety and well-being of our workforce.
"At the same time there is a need to ensure that in the current climate, businesses can operate without having to shoulder excessive burdens posed by unnecessary red tape and regulations."
While some bodies, notably the Trades Union Congress, have said the moves will put workers lives at risk, Mr Noakes said it would not "devalue health and safety".
"It rather calls on all of us to work in partnership and start a debate on how to radically transform regulations in our country to serve the ultimate goal – ensuring the best possible treatment of our workforce while allowing businesses to grow," he said.