zondag 22 januari 2012

Romanian workers in Belgium

Belgium has refused to open its labour market to workers from Romania and Bulgaria on the grounds that many nationals of those countries already working there cheat the social benefits system, The market stays closed until 2015.

Despite earlier indications to the contrary, one of the first decisions of the newly appointed Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo has been to extend until the end of 2013 the restrictions on Bulgarian and Romanian workers in Belgium.

The announcement, made by Belgian Employment Minister Monica De Coninck, is seen as a setback for Bulgaria and Romania, which had campaigned for lifting all remaining restrictions applying to their nationals in EU countries (see background).

Romanian workers can only come legally to Belgium with the A1 form (detachment ) when a Belgian company signs a contract for subcontracting with a Romanian company. The Romanian company has to apply to Limosa and announce the workers in this system.
So it is time that a lot of Belgian companies start to take measures for regularization in order to avoid problems with the labour inspection in Belgium.
It is better to work under legal provisions.
Employees who are temporarily staying in Belgium for a service, are not tourists. They must register in the municipality where they temporarily reside.
There is a different procedure depending on the expected length of service or not exceeding 3 months.
Documents required for a period longer than three months:

• Contract of service
• identity card or passport
• employment
• any work permit from the country where the employee normally works
• A1
• Belgian residence address
• Copy of birth certificate
• Copy of marriage certificate

European truckers hit out over cabotage expansion for Romania

5th January 2012 – France’s leading haulage federation, the FNTR, says the competitiveness of its members is under even greater pressure now Bulgarian and Romanian operators can access the domestic market within the framework of cabotage enlargement in the EU.
Cabotage has been one of the FNTR’s major preoccupations for some time. It says France alone accounts for one-third of all cabotage operations in the EU and that more than 40% of trucks on the country’s roads are now foreign-registered.
Since 1 January – marking the next stage in the liberalisation of the European road haulage sector – hauliers from Bulgaria and Romania have joined those from Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and the three Baltic states, who, since May 2009, have had the right to carry out up to three domestic transport operations in fellow member states over a seven-day period, following an international operation.
“The arrival of Bulgarian and Romanian hauliers will generate new tensions on the French domestic market, as a result of very different labour and fiscal costs,” the FNTR warned.
“Not only are we are at a considerable competitive disadvantage with counterparts in eastern and central Europe, but also with haulage firms in Germany, Belgium and Spain, who, for the moment at least, are the most active in the cabotage market in France, an FNTR spokesman told IFW.
Our message to the French government is ‘at least allow us to compete on equal terms with our near European neighbours by relieving the rigidity of work and labour legislation in force in France’.”
The French government is planning across-industry legislation before the presidential election this spring to reduce the amount companies contribute to the state-run health-care and pension systems being reduced, the effect of which would be to trim the business costs of FNTR’s members.
“More substantial measures will have to wait until after the election,” the spokesman admitted.
He went on to paint a depressing picture of the road haulage sector in France, revealing that a Banque de France rating system on the financial health of firms showed that French hauliers, representing one-third of the staff employed in the sector, were in a vulnerable position.