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18 January 2006
Spain: Commission decides to refer Spain to the Court of Justice over two tax provisions
The European Commission has decided to refer Spain to the Court of Justice over its taxation of non-residents’ employment-related income and over its taxation of non-residents’ capital gains realized on the sale of Spanish immovable property. The Commission considers that Spanish tax legislation in these two areas fails to conform to the EC Treaty requirements, in particular to the non-discrimination principle. (Ref 0643)
18 January 2006
France : government introduces two flexible job contracts
French Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin announced earlier this week that he was to introduce a bill creating two new job contracts. The most significant, called “first job contract”, will be intended to employees under 26 years old, in companies with more than 20 employees. The government’s official goal is to take on the sky-high unemployment rate of youngsters in France (23% of them are unemployed). (Ref 0640)
18 January 2006
France: highest court’s judgment makes way for easier layoffs
French companies could soon be able to proceed to mass layoffs much more easily. A few days ago, the Cour de Cassation, which is the final Court of Appeal in France, decided that it was legal for a company to layoff for economic reasons even if problems are not there yet but just expected. In other words, companies don’t have to wait to be in trouble to get rid of their employees. (Ref 0638)
16 January 2006
ETUC sends memorandum to the Austrian presidency of the EU
In its memorandum published on January 11th 2006, the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) hopes the Austrian presidency will give a true “social dimension” to the EU. Following is the bulk of the ETUC’ s demands. The ETUC forgets to ask for the overhaul of the directive on work councils (Ref 0631).
13 January 2006
Spain : workplace smoking ban forces smokers to go outdoors
The law that took effect on January 1st totally forbids tobacco on workplaces. Workers who smoke will have to go in the open air to do so. Here is a summary of the law, its implication as far as social law is concerned, and the questions that arise in terms of work relationships. (Ref 0632)
13 January 2006
Denmark : closed shop practice will end
On January 11th, the European Court for human rights, acting upon two Danish lawsuits, has condemned the closed shop clauses that oblige all employees of one company to join a determined labor union. The Danish government’s response came soon, the Minister for employment announced an overhaul. (Réf 0629)
12 January 2006
Sweden: Anonymous résumés could become mandatory
A governmental board of inquiry has just released a report that recommends the use of anonymous résumés. Sven-Erik Österberg, the Minister of local authorities, said he supported this measure because it helps to fight discriminations during the hiring process. A special project will start next fall. Its task is to evaluate the efficiency of this measure.
12 January 2006
A European dictionary on industrial relations
The European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, located in Dublin, has published a European dictionary on industrial relations. It deals with the most common words used in the fields of employment and industrial relations, at the European level.
12 January 2006
Spain : directive on employee involvement in the European company to be transposed
Spanish deputies will soon have to debate on the transposition of the directive on employee involvement in the European company. During negotiations on the European text, Spain had made problems because it refused to be imposed of creating a system in which employees are involved in the management. Spain assimilates this system to the Franco Period.