The European Parliament today adopted at first reading the compromise on the Enforcement Directive on the Posting of Workers. The Directive will improve conditions for the one million workers who are posted around Europe every year, the three biggest posting countries being Poland, Germany and France. The compromise reached at the end of February by the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission will certainly improve the protection of workers' rights, provide companies with necessary legal clarity thus enabling them to make full use of the Single Market and ensure effective controls in order to identify dishonest companies.
"The Parliament has adopted a text that responds in a balanced way to expectations both by workers and employers. Due to strong unanimity within our Group, we have managed to vote down amendments tabled by some Members from the S&D and GUE Groups aimed at threatening the compromised reached by all Institutions. The EPP Group has behaved today in a determined and responsible way and voted in favour of workers' protection and freedom to provide services. This is what we need now in order to secure safe and stable jobs in order to bring growth back to Europe", said Danuta Jazłowiecka MEP, the Parliament’s Rapporteur on the Directive.
The Enforcement Directive contains a number of provisions that will improve the functioning of the posting process. When checking whether posting is genuine, national labour inspectors will use common lists of clearly identified elements. In addition, national authorities will have to take measures to exclude cases of persons falsely declared as self-employed. Agreement has been reached on improved access to information on applicable terms and conditions of employment which will have to be published on a single national website. Countries will have to indicate institutions to which workers and undertakings can address additional questions. Member States will also be obliged to put in place mechanisms enabling posted workers to lodge complaints against dishonest companies and receive from their employer e.g. outstanding net remuneration. Posted workers in the construction sector will be additionally protected by joint and several liability. Also, administrative cooperation between Member States as well as cross-border enforcement of financial penalties and fines will be improved.
Member States will keep necessary flexibility in choosing control instruments to be used when inspecting foreign companies, provided that these instruments are justified and proportionate. In order to improve legal clarity, these control instruments will have to be communicated to the European Commission and published on single national websites.
"The Enforcement Directive will provide companies with legal clarity with regards to controls in host Member States. Also, workers can be happy with today's vote - they will have access to many instruments that will help secure their rights. After two years, we have managed to achieve a balanced text. Now the biggest challenge will be its implementation", concluded Jazłowiecka.
The main purpose of the Enforcement Directive is to improve the implementation of the Posting of Workers Directive from 1996.