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European Commission

Statement

Brussels, 12 March 2014

Free movement of workers: Commissioner Andor welcomes Parliament's approval of Directive

"I warmly welcome today's approval by the European Parliament of the proposed Directive to make it easier for people to exercise their right to work in another Member State, less than one year since the Commission presented the proposal (see IP/13/372). This is good news for all those who want to work or are already working in another Member State. In particular, the rules will better protect EU mobile workers against discrimination and will help them overcome obstacles to working in another EU country.

Whether people wish to work in another EU country is a matter of personal choice but these new rules will enable EU citizens to be more aware of their rights and better able to overcome difficulties. Employers will also benefit from better provision of information when hiring people from another EU country. The overall aim is to facilitate mobility within the EU labour market.

Free movement for workers is not only an essential element of the EU's Single Market, but an asset to all EU countries. Mobility can help to address high levels of unemployment in some Member States and skill and labour shortages in others. This is why the Commission is also working to further improve the efficiency of the pan-European job search network EURES, so more vacancies are available to more candidates all through the EU (IP/14/26 and MEMO/14/23).

Studies have consistently shown that mobile labour force brings benefits to host countries. Mobile workers complement the national labour force by filling shortages, they are more likely to be in employment and, since they tend to be of working age and therefore younger in average than the host population, they are less likely to receive benefits, being generally net contributors to the public purse. By sending home part of their income, mobile workers also provide significant support to domestic demand, investment and entrepreneurship in their countries of origin.

I now look forward to the final adoption of the new rules by the Council of Ministers in the coming weeks."

See also MEMO/14/187

Contacts :

Jonathan Todd (+32 2 299 41 07)

Cécile Dubois (+32 2 295 18 83)

For the public: Europe Direct by phone 00 800 6 7 8 9 10 11 or by e­mail


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