Tens of thousands of people have protested across Europe in protest against the controversial EU Services Directive. The measure, due to be debated by the European Parliament next week, has been hailed by its supporters as a key tool to bring legal and administrative barriers down within the EU’s single market.
Services make up more than 60 percent of the EU economy and the EU executive sees opening it up as an important way of generating jobs and improving competitiveness.
But critics say there will be a sudden flood of cheaper labour from the eastern EU states when the so-called “Bolkestein directive” comes into force.
There were thousands of demonstrators in Berlin as well as in Strasbourg. The European Parliament’s two dominant parties have already agreed a deal to water down the controversial plans. However sources say a compromise is by no means certain.