Work/Life – 6 / 67 观点
Welcome to the latest edition of our international employment news update.
The European Commission has revealed a new online employment search engine called "EU Talent Pool" to help Ukrainians displaced by Russian invasion search for jobs. This pilot initiative is said to be needed until at least March 2024 with the ability for those returning to Ukraine to retain their rights in the event that they may need to flee again.
The programme has had sign-up from five EU countries so far and is expected to launch by mid-2023.
The ECJ has ruled that the employment terms of a Belgian company which banned the visible wearing of all religious, spiritual or philosophical signs in the workplace did not count as direct discrimination. The ECJ held that there was no infringement of EU legislation "on the basis of religion or belief" as long as the terms are implemented consistently to all employees within the company of whatever religion.
A proposed rule by the Biden administration could remove a 2021 Trump administration which allowed for employers to refer to workers as independent contractors. The new rule would introduce a strict test on companies regarding classification of independent contractors and would allow the designation of drivers for food delivery services to be classified as employees, rather than independent contractors.
On 3 October, the UAE announced a new 'job exploration visa' to attract young professionals to the country and make it easier for jobseekers to find employment. The single-entry permit does not require a sponsor or a host and can be issued for a duration of either 60, 90 or 120 days.
Despite research showing that a third of UK companies expect a shift in work pattern which will see workers on a four-day work week within the next 10 years, only 1% of companies plan to offer full pay for less hours. It is suggested that people "may very well look to increase their hours to boost their income".
New legislation to reform the Dutch pension system has again been delayed and will now not come into effect until at least July 2023. Under the new system, pension funds will no longer ‘make promises’ about the size of the pensions they will deliver. Instead, pensions will vary in line with investment returns and life expectancy, meaning the economy will have more of an influence on pay-outs. The negotiations on reforming the Dutch system started some 12 years ago and the new system should be up and running by 2027 – if it gets parliamentary approval.
The government's migration reform plans are set to be announced later this year.
According to the Nuremberg Institute for Employment Research, almost 2 million jobs were unfilled in Germany in the second quarter of 2022. This shortage of skilled workers has had a serious impact on the economy and costs Germany around 86 billion euros per year. The situation may worsen in the coming years despite between 300,000 and 400,000 workers immigrating to Germany every year.
Liz Truss has resigned as UK Prime Minister. Controversy in reversals of policy changes caused by an economic crisis in the UK has left questions concerning the possible "bonfire" of EU law which could have several implications on workers' rights. We wrote this last week. Sometimes a week really is a long time in politics, so the IR35 reversals have been reversed, the UK awaits news of who the new PM will be, and our best guess remains that very radical reforms to UK employment law is unlikely.
The lifting of the cap on bankers' bonuses is still set to go ahead, and that is probably not going to light too many fires. Nor would reform to UK law on non-competes – a Boris Johnson project that might yet see the light of day. Join us to read the tea leaves in our webinar on this on 27 October 2022.