Since 2010 there was a 40% rise in posted workers providing services (e.g. in construction) in another Member State than their own on a temporary basis. These 1.9 million workers make up about 0.7% of the EU labor force. Therefore, the Commission suggested to re-check the rules that apply to these workers to make sure there is fair competition and the same rules for everyone (e.g. similar wage levels for posted and local workers). So far posted workers are covered by social security rules of the country they come from. So employers can hire workers from countries with a lower wage than in their own.
Because the EU is taking care of worker's rights and how is that not important?
In short: the same pay for the same job at the same place. Equal pay and working conditions between local and posted workers are very close to the Commission's heart in a European Single Market where it is essential to provide services cross-border.
There are three new points in the revision to the "Posted Workers Directive" as proposed by EU Emploment Commissioner Marianne Thyssen:
So far, the transport sector will be excluded from these new rules. The Platform against undeclared work will be used to fight fraud and abuses and to improve the exchange of information and administrative cooperation between member states.
The new rules were suggested by the Commission in March 2016 and now Parliament and Council are discussing them. Within the EP the proposal is dealt with in the Employment and Social Affairs Committee (see draft position). The Council already agreed on a common position and is now waiting for the Parliament to start negotiations. As soon as the institutions come to an agreement there will be a three year transposition period plus one more year before the application of the directive.
Initially, some national parliaments wanted to fight this proposal through the so-called "yellow card procedure" (find out what exactly this is). If they think a matter is better handled at the national level they can delay the adoption of new rules. The Commission considered their concerns but decided in the end to keep the proposal as it is. 14 mostly Eastern European countries issued a "reasoned opinion" on (or rather against) this proposal.
A European Platform to fight undeclared work
Public list of company owners to fight money laundering
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