France welcomes EU deal on posted workers
European Union – Posted workers – Reply by M. Edouard Philippe, Prime Minister, to a question to the government in the Senate
Paris, 26 October 2017
I pay tribute to the work of Mme Pénicaud and Mme Loiseau, who have been constantly touring European capitals to explain the French position.
Three years ago the situation was unsatisfactory; no member of parliament would have stood up to say this directive was a good directive. A little more than a year ago, when the European Commission put its proposal on the table, few people thought we’d manage to change it. On Monday, after unexpected partners in the East rallied round, we secured an agreement.
The situation isn’t perfect but it’s better than yesterday. There’s still work, because the Commission took a different position, to which it seems we can quickly get closer through three-way discussion. I hope so, because this text will be more protective for all European workers. It applies to transport workers but – given their clear distinctive characteristics, since they are by nature mobile – specific details about controls must be provided.
What has prevailed is a method: the creation of a majority through very delicate work, without ever playing the deadly game of pitting Western and Eastern Europe against each other. That’s invaluable for the future of this text and the future of Europe./.