The European Commission is taking more concrete new initiatives to further deliver on the European Pillar of Social Rights. More specifically, the Commission has presented its proposal for a European Labour Authority, as announced by President Juncker in 2017, as well as an initiative to ensure access to social protection for all workers and self-employed.

Over the last decade, the number of mobile citizens, people living and/or working in another Member State, has almost doubled to reach 17 million in 2017. According to the Commission the European Labour Authority will help individuals, businesses and national administrations to get the most out of the opportunities offered by free movement and to ensure fair labour mobility. The objective of the Authority is three-fold. The Authority is intended to provide information to citizens and business on opportunities for jobs, apprenticeships, mobility schemes, recruitments and training, as well as guidance on rights and obligations to live, work and/or operate in another Member State of the EU.

In addition, according to Commission plans, the Authority will support cooperation between national authorities in cross-border situations, by helping them ensure that the EU rules that protect and regulate mobility are easily and effectively followed. Today, an extensive body of EU legislation regulates the free movement of workers and a number of such rules are being amended and modernised, such as for the coordination of social security systems across the EU and issues like posting of workers in the context of service provision (revision of the Posting of Workers Directive). The Commission’s priority is to make these rules fairer and fit-for-purpose but also to make sure that they can be correctly applied and enforced in an effective way in all economic sectors.

Third, the European Labour Authority will be able to provide mediation and facilitate solutions in case of cross-border disputes, such as in the event of company restructuring involving several Member States.

In accordance with the ordinary legislative procedure, this proposal for a Regulation will now be examined by the European Parliament and the Council. According to the Commission the European Labour Authority should be established as a new decentralised EU agency and, following the completion of the EU legislative process, should be up and running in 2019. To facilitate the establishment of the Authority and make sure it is rapidly up and running once created, the Commission is also setting up an advisory group composed of key stakeholders to look into the practical aspects of the future functioning of the Authority.