Emmanuel Macron : French President sets sights on European Union rule on detached workers

Emmanuel Macron : French President sets sights on European Union rule on detached workers

All Slovak ministers gave their approval for the rule prior to the meeting between Prime Minister Robert Fico and his counterparts Bohuslav Sobotka from the Czech Republic, Christian Kern from Austria and French President Emmanuel Macron in Salzburg on August 23.

The directive was launched in 1996 to help stimulate cross-border business activity.

Macron is pushing for the duration of these contracts to be limited to one year rather than two under a new European Commission proposal, to reinforce measures to ensure the rules are obeyed, and to guarantee equal pay with local workers.

French President Emmanuel Macron is starting his first official visits to Central and Eastern Europe, heading on Thursday and Friday to the Romanian capital, Bucharest, and to Varna, on Bulgaria's Black Sea coast.

"Macron needs to deliver for French public opinion", Vimont said.

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The French president said progress has been made over the issue in the meeting, saying that a step forward was made.

A separate European Union regulation provides that workers with a temporary posting of no more than two years will remain attached to the social security system of their home country.

Austria has seen the number of posted workers rise from around 106,000 in 2014 to 166,490 in 2016 in a workforce of four million, according to the Vienna-based research institute L&R Sozialforschung.

Macron is also demanding greater efforts to fight abuse of the directive, under which 286,000 people were employed in France in 2015. In May, Macron promised to curb untaxed and uninsured Eastern European labour in France, blaming the United Kingdom and "ultra-liberal" EU member states for social dumping practices.

An estimated 500,000 of its nationals are employed by Polish companies in other European Union members.

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Macron has faced criticism from the s0-called Visegrad Group, comprising Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, however, which defend their right to compete on lower wages.

He touched on the issue during his election campaign earlier this year and discussed it with several EU Central European leaders at the European Council that took place in Brussels in June.

Poland is the country that benefits most from the Posted Workers Directive.

"The European directive on detached workers in its current format is a betrayal of the European spirit", Macron said in Salzburg at the start of a diplomatic blitz through eastern and central Europe.

He also wants much deeper integration of the eurozone, including giving the 19-country currency bloc its own budget, finance minister, parliament and borrowing capacity.

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