The coordination of EU social security systems must be reconsidered

2019. 09. 11.

Press release by MEP Ádám Kósa

The European Parliament’s Employment and Social Affairs committee held a debate on September 3 with European Commissioner Marianne Thyssen concerning the coordination of social security systems. In his remarks, MEP Ádám Kósa argued that the draft regulation must be reconsidered immediately, with particular regards to the posting of workers.

Who and what is the reason behind the fact that the Commission refuses to withdraw the draft regulation and why would an outgoing Commission put a weight this heavy on the shoulder of their successors? – MEP Kósa asked the European Commissioner

As Kósa said, 60 percent of the European Parliament comprises new representatives. It shouldn’t be considered acceptable to push through a regulation that the previous body of representatives has been negotiating for three years, several times amidst heated debates. On top of this, the regulation didn’t even receive the majority of votes in the Council. The sections concerning posted workers should be reconsidered with particular attention.

Hungary has never before requested the supervision of the regulation, the EPP Group politician emphasized, and passing it still does not constitute a priority because it’s full of protectionist measures that would put Central and Eastern European workers at a disadvantage.

Background: The Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 on the coordination of social security systems was initiated by the European Commission in December 2016. From a Hungarian perspective, the regulation included almost exclusively disadvantageous measures, so our country voted against it. The regulation would tighten the conditions of posted workers, it would change which party would be responsible for covering the unemployment benefits of a worker who commutes across national borders, and it would ease the access to permanent healthcare treatment in another Member State as long as the country of insurance bears the costs. It would introduce a provision that economically inactive persons (e.g. family members) would have access to certain services in the country of residence only under additional conditions and even the possibility of the indexing of family allowances came up. The Council and the European Parliament couldn’t come to an agreement in first reading prior to the EP elections, therefore it is the task of the new European Parliament to decide whether to proceed with the negotiations.