Spain and eight other EU countries block European ‘rider’s law’


“We worked hand in hand to move the work forward. We tried to present compromise versions but in the final vote we did not manage to reach a qualified majority”, summarized the Czech minister at the end of the Council of Ministers for Social Affairs and Employment of the EU. Marian Jurecka on the result of the negotiation on the digital platform workers directivethe European “friendly law”. Spain and eight other countries –Portugal, Slovenia, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, Greece, Germany and Romania– succeeded in forming a blocking minority and finally opposed the Czech compromise that the vice-president Yolanda Diaz was deemed insufficient.

“The presumption of employment is unbalanced, it has been significantly weakened compared to the Commission’s initial proposal and it does not properly classify people working on digital platforms. It also does not guarantee homogeneous protection in the EU,” Díaz explained on why he rejected a compromise proposal that envisages reducing labor rights, diluting the presumption of employment of workers on platforms such as Uber, Glovo or Deliveroo and this does not. put an end to the abuse of bogus independents who would continue in a precarious situation.

New negotiation in 2023

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The Czech EU Presidency tried until the last minute to work out a compromise that would be acceptable to as many delegations as possible and in the final vote, as Jureçaka said, they almost got the necessary qualified majority but in the end in Prague they ran out of votes to achieve the norm. “We have managed to make progress and we are close to the agreement. I am optimistic & rdquor ;, he said after the meeting. The dossier will now pass into the hands of the Swedish EU Presidency, which will take over the six-monthly presidency on January 1, 2023. The Czech incumbent admitted that for a group of countries the level of ambition “was too weak& rdquor; while for others it was “too high & rdquor;.

“We managed to bring these two positions together. We needed a little more time to do more consultation and clarify things more. I think that today we have been very close to an agreement”, he added about a proposal which aims to improve the professional recognition of these workers”, insisted Jureçaka. At his side, the employment commissioner, Nicholas Schmitt, admitted that the agreement is not easy and that there are fundamental differences between the positions of the countries which defend a proposal close to that raised by Brussels and those which undertake to dilute it. “I think the ground has been cleared well. We are very close to the approach proposed by the Commission and I believe that the agreement is within reach.

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