On September 13, 2017, European Commission President Juncker delivered his 2017 State of the Union Address before the Members of the European Parliament in Strasbourg. He presented the priorities for the year ahead and outlined a Roadmap for a stronger, more united and more democratic Union. President Juncker announced plans for a European Economy and Finance Minister to serve as an advocate for the euro and the EU economy. He also proposed a new EU framework for foreign investment screening.
This new EU framework would be set up to protect Europe's strategic assets and businesses from hostile foreign takeovers. The State of the Union also announced plans for a European Labour Authority that would ensure that EU rules on labour mobility are enforced in an effective way. As regards labour mobility and social dumping, Juncker proposed a reform of the current rules on posting of workers, which establishes the principle of equal pay for equal work at the same place, thus going significantly beyond the requirements of minimum remuneration of the existing directive. Other elements of this reform include: (i) rules set by universally applicable collective agreements will become mandatory for posted workers in all economic sectors; (ii) all labour law rules applicable to local workers will apply to posted workers after a certain duration; and (iii) the new rules will also apply to temporary agency workers to ensure the principle of equal pay for equal work. After the speech, President Juncker and First Vice-President Timmermans sent a letter of intent to the President of the European Parliament and the Presidency of the Council that sets out in detail the actions the European Commission intends to take by means of legislation and other initiatives until the end of 2018.