If so, does the Commission plan to take any action against it?2. In the Commission’s opinion, is holiday pay covered by the ‘posted workers’ Directive 96/71/EC? (
)Must Germany adapt its legislation before the directive enters fully into force?3. Is the Commission aware that similar complaints have been raised in other Member States?
) OJ L 18, 21.1.1997, p. 1.
Answer given by Mr Flynn on behalf of the Commission
(13 July 1998)
The Honourable Member raises questions concerning the freedom to provide services across borders, afundamental freedom under Article 59 of the EC Treaty, in particular the question of the conditions of applicationof Directive 96/71/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 1996 concerning theposting of workers in the framework of the provision of services (
).The aim of this Directive is to ensure that any enterprise providing services on the territory of another MemberStateand posting workers there to this end complies witha ‘hard core’ of labour lawrules in force in thatMemberState. Under German legislation, foreign enterprises providing services on German territory are obliged tocomply with German rules governing contributions to holiday-pay funds set up by the social partners.The Commission has received and examined several complaints from various Member States concerning therisks of double payment facing employers when they are subject to obligations concerning holiday pay forworkers in both their Member State of origin and the host Member State, in this case Germany. The Commissiontakestheviewthatthisdouble burden on employersrestricts thefreedom to provide servicesand violatesboth theletter and the spirit of Directive 96/71/EEC.While, under the terms of the Directive, Germany is entitled to require foreign enterprises to comply withcompulsory German provisions on the payment of contributions to holiday-pay funds, the application of thisobligation must not violate the provisions of the Directive or Article 59 et seq. of the EC Treaty and must takeaccount in particular of the protection granted and guaranteed to posted workers in this area by the legislation orpractices in force in the Member State from which they are posted, the aim being to avoid the risk of doublepayment.In any event, workers must be ableto benefit from theapplicationof such an obligation on employers topay contributions.The Commission has organised several meetings of national experts in order to ensure proper transposition of theDirective. It also encourages the conclusion of agreements between social partners in order to avoid all doublepayment risks for employers.
) OJ L 18, 21.1.1997.
WRITTEN QUESTION E-1504/98by Daniel Varela Suanzes-Carpegna (PPE) to the Commission
(13 May 1998)Subject:
The information society and social and economic cohesionIn her appearance before Parliament’s Committee on Regional Policy on 23 January 1997 in connection with thepresentation of the Commission Communication on cohesion and the information society (COM(97) 7 final of 22 January 1997), Mrs Mathies, Commissioner, mentioned that the Community’s research and developmentpolicy should also help to facilitate the transition to the information society.C 50/42 EN 22.2.1999Official Journal of the European Communities