EU Commission intervenes in German wage law which penalises Irish haulage industry – Hayes
Dublin MEP, Brian Hayes has today (Sunday) welcomed the European Commission’s decision to issue infringements against Germany over their minimum wage legislation that heavily penalises Irish hauliers on German roads.
“In January 2015 the German Government introduced a minimum wage of €8.50. The legislation not only applies to people living in Germany but also for international truck drivers who are passing through Germany. From the moment a truck drivers enters Germany to the moment they leave they must be paid the German minimum wage.”
“While the Irish minimum wage is already above the new German rate at €9.15, the problem is compliance. The legislation requires that anyone stopped on the roadside must produce contracts of employment, payslips, records of working hours and even bank statements. Irish hauliers must have this information in order to prove they are complaint. Penalties for non-compliance can be as high as €30,000.”
“This legislation is impacting the Irish Road Haulage industry with companies having to ensure there drivers have all the necessary paper work when commencing work in mainland Europe. You can have a situation where an Irish truck driver is working on the continent for a two week period. They won’t have access to payslips or timesheets until they return to Ireland. It is an administrative nightmare for Irish companies.”
“I strongly welcome the decision by the European Commission to issue infringements against Germany. This is not about the minimum wage – that is a good thing. It’s about enforcement. Why include foreign truck drivers in the legislation? No other EU country does so. The legislation has effectively created a barrier to free trade.”
“We should not forget that 98% of all Irish exports leaves through our ports and then on by road to their destination. Mad barriers to trade, such as this, must be challenged as a means of preventing the free movement of trade” concluded MEP Hayes.