Directive (EU) 2018/957 amending Directive 96/71/EC concerning the posting of workers in the framework of the provision of services

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Series Details L173, 9.7.2018
Publication Date 09/07/2018
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The European Commission presented on 8 March 2016 a proposal reforming some rules on posting of workers within the European Union, by updating Directive 96/71/EC, originally adopted in 1996.

+ COM(2016)128: Proposal for a Directive amending Directive 96/71/EC concerning the posting of workers in the framework of the provision of services
+ Further sources on launch of COM(2016)128 and reaction from Member States

Upon the launch of this initiative, several Member States showed concerns and a number of national parliaments issued reasoned opinions. The 'Yellow Card' option was activated, forcing the Commission to re-assess its proposal. A Communication was published on 20 July 2016 which concluded that the draft law did not constitute a breach of the subsidiarity principle.

The Council of the European Union agreed on its general approach regarding this initiative on 23 October 2017, following the effort of different rotating presidencies over a year. The European Parliament's plenary session approved its negotiating position two days later. An informal agreement between the institutions was reached on 15 March 2018. The Parliament formally endorsed the compromise draft law on 29 May, followed by the Council on 21 June. The new Directive was adopted on 28 June.

Further information:

The Commission announced in its Political Guidelines and confirmed in its Work Programme 2016 a targeted revision of the Posting of Workers Directive. It does not address any issue touched upon by the Enforcement Directive. The proposal is for a targeted revision of the Posting of Workers Directive, introducing changes in three main areas: remuneration of posted workers, including in situations of subcontracting; rules on temporary agency workers; and long-term posting. The draft law also aims to codify the case law of the CJEU, thus improving the clarity of EU legislation.

This was seen as a very sensitive draft law on a topic which gathered great political attention and distinct interests between Member States, particularly between Western countries and Central-Eastern European countries. Stakeholders and advisory committees emphasised sector-specific differences to posting, the danger of 'cascade subcontracting' practices, as well as the importance of collective agreements.

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Related Links
EUR-Lex: SWD(2016)52: Impact assessment
EUR-Lex: SWD(2016)53: Executive summary of the impact assessment
ETUC: Press Release, 31.08.17: Trade unions want ambitious revision of Posted Workers Directive by the end of the year
EurActiv: Opinion, 04.09.17: Posting of workers: A call for a broader debate
The Local (France), 23.08.17: Macron embarks on tour to drum up support for EU reform plans
EurActiv, 07.09.17: Polish PM accuses Macron of pursuing ‘protectionism’ in EU
EurActiv, 12.09.17: France seeks last-minute support for posted workers bill
France24, 14.03.17: When nationalism summons Gallicism to keep foreign workers out of France
Politico, 23.08.17: Emmanuel Macron: EU’s labor rules create unfair competition
Open Europe: Blog, 26.10.17: Clash over the reform of the Posted Workers Directive points to wider divisions in EU
ERR News, 24.10.17: Posted workers deal Estonian presidency’s greatest achievement yet
European Commission: Press Release, 24.10.17: Commission welcomes the Council's endorsement of the European Pillar of Social Rights and its general approach to reform the Posting of Workers Directive
Reuters, 23.10.17: Most EU states push reform of labour rules sought by France's Macron
Radio Poland, 24.10.17: EU labour ministers adopt new rules for workers despite Polish opposition,EU-labour-ministers-adopt-new-rules-for-workers-despite-Polish-opposition
European Parliament: Press Release, 29.05.18: Posting of workers: final vote on equal pay and working conditions
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 24.10.17: Posting of workers: Council reaches agreement
EP: Legislative Observatory: Procedure file of Directive on Posting of workers in the framework of the provision of services
Euro|Topics, October 2017: Why is the EU reforming the posted workers directive?
European Parliament: Infographic, 16.10.17: Posted workers: the facts on the reform
EPRS: Briefing, October 2017: The revision of the Posting of Workers Directive
Legislative Train: Revision of the Directive on the Posting of Workers - Labour Mobility Package
EPRS: Briefing, May 2016: Initial Appraisal of European Commission Impact Assessment
EPRS: At a Glance: Study in Focus, July 2016: Posting of Workers Directive – Current Situation and Challenges
Bruegel: Blog, 18.10.17: Revision of the Posted Workers Directive misses the point
EPRS: At a Glance, May 2018: Revising the Posting of Workers Directive
EurActiv, 15.09.16: Parliament paves way for posted workers reform
Senior European Experts: Papers, 02.07.18: Reform of the Posting of Workers Directive
Social Europe, 05.03.18: Posted Workers: More Europe Is More Freedom
CEPS: Commentary, 18.09.17: Is Juncker’s enthusiasm for a common labour authority premature?

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