Collective Agreement Eu Directive


On 28 October 2020, the European Commission presented a proposal for the adoption of an EU directive on minimum wages. The Directive proposes, among other things, elements that the national level of wages must contain in order to be “reasonable”. The proposed directive now belongs to the national governments of the Member States and the European Parliament, and it is too early to say that this directive will have sufficient support to be adopted. Eurofound also draws up a biannual report on the main developments in working time in the EU and Norway, based on the national reports. It provides a general overview of the current state of working time as a result of collective bargaining and complements the database of wages, working time and collective disputes. On 28 October 11, 2020, the European Commission presented a proposal for the adoption of an EU directive on the living minimum wage. The proposal for a directive recommends (and prefers) the promotion of collective agreements, as countries that rely on collective agreements tend to benefit from a higher minimum wage and better wage protection. And the European Posting of Workers Directive: see GMS Flash Alert 2020-329 (27 July 2020). On 28th October the European Commission published its proposal for a directive on the decent minimum wage in the European Union. This is a turning point in the history of Europe`s social and economic integration: for the first time, the Commission is adopting legislative measures aimed not only at ensuring fair minimum wages, but also at strengthening collective bargaining in Europe.

While the free movement of workers was at the heart of the first agreement of the European Economic Community, the evolution of European labour law has been a gradual process. Originally, the Ohlin Report of 1956 recommended that labour standards should not be harmonised, whereas a general principle of combating discrimination between men and women was included in the first contracts. Increasingly, the lack of labour rights has been deemed insufficient due to the capacity for a “race to decline” in international trade when companies can relocate jobs and production to low-wage countries. The adoption of a European directive on appropriate minimum wages would also mean that the Court of Justice of the European Communities would have jurisdiction to interpret the directive and would perhaps set a new precedent for the national level of wages and the way in which that level is set. The European Parliament considers that the proposal for a directive is important to address the negative economic effects of the pandemic in Europe. Access to employment opportunities and adequate minimum wages is essential to support a sustainable and inclusive economic recovery. In the absence of a clear and common definition of wage adequacy at EU level, there is a clear risk that some Member States will apply a very restrictive definition that will not promote a real improvement in the level of the minimum wage. In its impact assessment report, the Commission calculated that raising the national minimum wage by the double decency threshold – 60% of the median and 50% of the average wage – would improve the wages of around 25 million workers in Europe. This estimate should be the decisive yardstick for measuring whether the directive is a success or not: either it will actually contribute to wage improvements, or it will remain a political symbol with no apparent impact. . . .

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