ALDE calls on Member States to join the fight against undeclared work


The European Parliament has today adopted a report which backs the European Commission's proposal to create a platform for Member States and European institutions to share best practices and enhance cooperation in the field of employment. ALDE calls on Member States to support and join the platform, which will help to fight against undeclared work, create jobs, secure workers' rights and save tax revenues.

Speaking after the vote, Yana Toom, (Eesti Keskerakond,Estonia), ALDE shadow rapporteur, said:

"According to reliable estimates, in 2015 the average size of the shadow economy of the 28 EU countries was about 18% of GDP. No EU economy is free from this phenomenon".

"Undeclared work may have an important cross-border component and therefore it may even compromise the fundamental right to free movement. That is the reason why action at EU level is needed to fight against undeclared work".

"The new European Platform will be capable to address these complex problems. However, its efficiency will depend on the Member States, on their ability to be proactively engaged. Encouraging them to participate is vital. The EU will need also to adopt measures to foster cooperation between Member States".

Marian Harkin (Independent, Ireland), ALDE EMPL coordinator, added: "It is important to remember that undeclared work has many negative outcomes. Workers often have to accept poor working conditions with perhaps no commitment to health and safety, no social protection, no pension contributions, precarious working conditions etc. Society also loses out because of forgone tax and social security contributions and unfair competition between companies".

In 2012, the shadow economy in the EU-27 was estimated to be equal to EUR 1.87 trillion. Undeclared work makes part of this shadow economy and has serious budgetary implications, among which lower pension rights and less access to health care for employees.

The report voted today by the MEPs constitutes the outcome of the negotiations between the European parliament, the Commission and Member States (1st reading agreement). Read the report here.