At the invitation of its Slovak member Slovenský Živnostenský Zväz SZZ (the Slovak Craft Industry Federation, in English), an enlarged EBC Board of Directors travelled to Bratislava this week for its fourth meeting of the year.
This provided the ideal opportunity for a first in-depth meeting with the European Labour Authority (ELA), which is based there and has made construction its particular focus for 2023.
To this end, the EBC Board of Directors met in the ELA’s headquarters. After introductory presentations on the foundations of the two entities, the ELA gave a detailed presentation of its mission, work plan and ambitions, followed by a more focused discussion on the issues of posted workers, undeclared work, labour shortages and labour inspections with EBC delegates.
EBC delegates and ELA Executive Director Cosmin Boiangiu
Regarding the posting of workers, EBC pointed out that it was the only employers’ organisation in favour of the last revision of the directive on the posting of workers, completed in 2018. Despite the improvements made at the time, EBC Directors shared that compliance with its principles and abusive practices are still ongoing, reminding the absolute needs for notification prior to posting, the need for a contractual relationship prior to posting and the disruptive role of temporary employment agencies.
ELA reiterated its operational role as an European agency, mentioning notably the findings of its EURES Report on labour shortages and surpluses 2022 and very recent 2023 Strategic analysis: Construction sector: Issues in information provision, enforcement of labour mobility law, social security coordination regulations, and cooperation between Member States, the latter of which was presented this same week in Berlin.
Additionally, ELA presented the EU Platform against undeclared work, the Posting 360 programme and the soon-to-come launch of the #EU4FAIRConstruction information campaigns for employers and workers on posting at national level, starting with an event in Belgium on 17 October.
Finally, both ELA and EBC discussed the need to increase the number of controls to identify abusive practices. ELA mentioned their willingness to develop thematic weeks on the topic of enforcement for public authorities, with a welcomed focus on subcontracting in construction for EBC.
To conclude, EBC manifested the need that micro and small construction companies are effectively consulted in the developments on social legislation impacting the sector, notably the objective of a simplified A1 document on social security rights announced as part of the SME Relief package, or the social ID card concept for construction workers.
The entire EBC network is at the disposal of the ELA to continue the fruitful exchanges for the benefit of all bonafide actors in the construction sector.
EBC President Philip van Nieuwenhuizen and ELA Executive Director Cosmin Boiangiu
|For more information on the work of the European Labour Authority, visit the website: www.ela.europa.eu|