2015 EU employers joint letter on possible consolidation of Information & Consultation Directives

As part of its REFIT programme that aims at cutting back legislation, the Commission wants to consolidate 3 EU Directives on the information and consultation of workers. EU employers ask the Commission not to pursue this initiative, which would have no effect in reducing red tape, and would result in a harmful impact on companies.

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European employers joint messages

  1. Consolidation would not solve any identifiable problem. Various studies have confirmed that the existing EU legislation on information and consultation of workers is working satisfactorily and is not the subject of debates. This well-established, comprehensive framework has been in place for many years and provides legal clarity for employees and companies alike.
  2. Having three separate directives makes sense. They address different situations, so it is logical that they include some differences in their scope, definitions and requirements. These differences have not led to any practical difficulties for companies.
  3. Consolidating the directives would do nothing to serve the goals of the better regulation agenda or of the REFIT programme2 . Reopening the Directives would simply spark a long period of debate, and legal uncertainty for both employers and workers due to new legal interpretations of information and consultation rules arising from a consolidated text.
  4. Harmonisation of definitions of “information” and “consultation” in the three Directives would lead to longer decision-making processes and unnecessary additional burdens for business. This would be of great harm, especially at a time when companies across the EU are still struggling to recover from the economic crisis.

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