European Court of Justice rulings in the Laval and Viking cases represent a “danger” for social Europe and open the door to “wage dumping” in the EU, leftist members of Parliament said, while business representatives argued the judgements were crucial to preserving freedom of movement and establishment throughout the bloc.
The debate, which took place on 26 February in Parliament’s employment committee, aimed to ascertain the implications that the two December 2007 rulings would have on EU law.
In particular, some MEPs argued they could weaken workers’ rights currently upheld in two key directives:
- The Posting of Workers Directive, which lays down minimum standards on issues such as pay rates, holidays, working hours, health and safety and gender equality for workers posted abroad for a limited period of time, and;
- the Services Directive, which requires states to ensure free access to and free exercise of a service activity within their territory but allows them to continue applying their own rules on conditions of employment, including those laid down through collective bargaining agreements.