Finland and Spain set to lift labour movement restrictions


Effective from 1 May 2006, Finland and Spain are expected to relax the restrictions on the free movement of workers from the new EU member states.

Finland’s Ministry of Labour and Finnish labour market organisations have unanimously proposed that the country should lift the restrictions on the free movement of labour from the new EU member states on 1 May 2006. The proposal still requires a decision from the country’s government and parliament.

Spain has indicated that it will also lift restrictions from 1 May 2006.

Under the Finnish regime, a workers’ registration system will be introduced which would enable Finland to monitor labour mobility and supervise terms of employment. A detailed proposal to this effect will be drafted by the representatives of government and labour market organisations by 10 March, and then the bill will be submitted to legislators. 

According to the proposal, Finland should not introduce restrictions on the movement of Bulgarian and Romanian citizens upon the two countries’ scheduled accession to the EU in January 2007.

Britain, Ireland and Sweden have already allowed unrestricted access to their labour markets, and Belgium and Portugal are considering following suit.

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