Procedure : 2007/0054(COD)
Document stages in plenary
Document selected : A6-0515/2007

Texts tabled :

A6-0515/2007

Debates :

PV 15/01/2008 - 6
CRE 15/01/2008 - 6

Votes :

PV 15/01/2008 - 8.6
Explanations of votes

Texts adopted :

P6_TA(2008)0006

REPORT     ***I
PDF 192kWORD 189k
20 December 2007
PE 391.969v02-00 A6-0515/2007

on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Council Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71 on the application of social security schemes to employed persons, to self-employed persons and to members of their families moving within the Community

(COM(2007)0159 – C6-0104/2007 – 2007/0054(COD))

Committee on Employment and Social Affairs

Rapporteur: Csaba Őry

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION
 EXPLANATORY STATEMENT
 PROCEDURE

DRAFT EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT LEGISLATIVE RESOLUTION

on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council amending Council Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71 on the application of social security schemes to employed persons, to self-employed persons and to members of their families moving within the Community

(COM(2007)0159 – C6-0104/2007 – 2007/0054(COD))

(Codecision procedure: first reading)

The European Parliament,

–   having regard to the Commission proposal to the European Parliament and the Council (COM(2007)0159),

–   having regard to Article 251(2) and Articles 42 and 308 of the EC Treaty, pursuant to which the Commission submitted the proposal to Parliament (C6-0104/2007),

–   having regard to Rule 51 of its Rules of Procedure,

–   having regard to the report of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (A6-0515/2007),

1.  Approves the Commission proposal as amended;

2.  Calls on the Commission to refer the matter to Parliament again if it intends to amend the proposal substantially or replace it with another text;

3.  Instructs its President to forward its position to the Council and Commission.

Text proposed by the Commission  Amendments by Parliament

Amendment 1

ANNEX, POINT 2 A (new)
Annex I, part II, heading "O. Hungary" (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

 

2a. In Annex I Part II, the heading "O. HUNGARY" is replaced by the following:

 

"O. HUNGARY

 

For the purpose of determining entitlement to benefits in kind pursuant to the provisions of Chapter 1 of Title III of the Regulation, "member of the family" means a spouse or dependent child as defined by Art. 685 Point b) of the Civil Code."

Justification

Because of changes in Hungarian health insurance laws, the former definition of "dependent family member" has been repealed. The new definition proposed, accepted by both the Commission and the Council, corresponds to the definition previously in force in Hungarian law.

Amendment 2

ANNEX, POINT 5
Annex II A, heading "I. Ireland", point (a) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

a) Unemployment benefit (Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, Part 3, Chapter 2);

(a) Jobseeker's allowance (Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, Part 3, Chapter 2);

Justification

asked for some minor changes in the text to align it with the wording of its legislation. These changes are accepted by both the Commission and the Council

Amendment 3

ANNEX, POINT 5
Annex II A, heading "I. Ireland", point (b) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

b) Old-age pension (non-contributory) (Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, Part 3, Chapter 4);

(b) State pension (non-contributory) (Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, Part 3, Chapter 4);

Justification

asked for some minor changes in the text to align it with the wording of its legislation. These changes are accepted by both the Commission and the Council

Amendment 4

ANNEX, POINT 5
Annex II A, heading "I. Ireland", point (c) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

(c) Widows'/widowers' pensions (non-contributory) (Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, Part 3, Chapter 6);

(c) Widow's (non contributory) pension and widower's (non-contributory) pension (Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005, Part 3, Chapter 6);

Justification

asked for some minor changes in the text to align it with the wording of its legislation. These changes are accepted by both the Commission and the Council

Amendment 5

ANNEX, POINT 8, POINT (A)
Annex IV, part C, heading "P. Hungary" (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

a)heading "O. HUNGARY" is deleted".

a) Heading "P. HUNGARY " is replaced by the following:

 

"P. Hungary

 

None"

Justification

This is a purely technical amendment. On Annex IV, part C of Reg. 1408/71 reference is made to all 27 Member States, even if it is just to say "None". If COM text is adopted as it is now, no reference at all will be made to Hungary in Annex IV, part C.

Amendment 6

ANNEX, POINT 8, POINT (B)
Annex IV, part C, heading "S. Austria" (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

b) Heading "R. AUSTRIA" is replaced by the following:

b) Heading "S. AUSTRIA" is replaced by the following:

"1. All applications for benefit under the Federal Act of 9 September 1955 on General Social Security (ASVG), the Federal Act of 11 October 1978 on the Social Security of Self-Employed Workers in Industry and Craft Trades (GSVG) and the Federal Act of 11 October 1978 on the Social Security of Self-Employed Workers in Agriculture and Forestry (BSVG), in as much as Articles 46b and 46c of the Regulation do not apply or, pursuant to Article 45 of the Regulation, another type of pension with more favourable calculation rules can be opted for.

"1. All applications for benefit under the Federal Act of 9 September 1955 on General Social Security (ASVG), the Federal Act of 11 October 1978 on the Social Security of Self-Employed Workers in Industry and Craft Trades (GSVG) and the Federal Act of 11 October 1978 on the Social Security of Self-Employed Workers in Agriculture and Forestry (BSVG), in as much as Articles 46b and 46c of the Regulation do not apply.

2. All applications for the following benefits on the basis of a pension account under the General Pensions Act (APG) of 18 November 2004, in as much as Articles 46b and 46c of the Regulation do not apply or, pursuant to Article 45 of the Regulation, another type of pension with more favourable calculation rules or the same type of pension with more favourable calculation rules can be opted for.

2. All applications for the following benefits on the basis of a pension account under the General Pensions Act (APG) of 18 November 2004, in as much as Articles 46b and 46c of the Regulation do not apply.

a) old age pensions;

a) old age pensions;

b) invalidity pensions;

b) invalidity pensions;

c) survivors' pensions, in as much as no increase of benefit is to be calculated on the basis of additional insurance months under Article 7(2) of the APG."

c) survivors' pensions, in as much as no increase of benefit is to be calculated on the basis of additional insurance months under Article 7(2) of the APG."

Justification

asked for the deletion of the last parts of the two paragraphs as they are no longer necessary due to changes in the internal legislation. Therefore, the comparative calculation referred to in Article 46(1) has to take place. Both Commission and Council agree.

Amendment 7

ANNEX, POINT 9, POINT (A A) (new)
Annex VI, Part A, heading "R. Netherlands", point 1, point (a), point (ii) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

 

(aa) In Annex VI, under the heading "R. NETHERLANDS", point 1(a)(ii) is replaced by the following:

 

"(ii) insofar as they are not already included under point (i), members of the family of active military personnel who are living in another member state and persons who are resident in another Member State and who, under the Regulation are entitled to health care in their state of residence, the costs being borne by the Netherlands."

Justification

This amendment will ensure that members of the families of military personnel living outside the Netherlands are also insured under the Care Insurance Act (ZVW).

Amendment 8

ANNEX, POINT 9, POINT (A B) (new)
Annex VI, Part A, heading "R. Netherlands", point 1, point (c) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

 

(ab) In Annex VI, under the heading "R. NETHERLANDS", point 1(c) is replaced by the following:

 

"(c) The provisions of the Zorgverzekeringswet (Health Care Insurance Act) and the Algemene Wet Bijzondere Ziektekosten (General Act on Exceptional Medical Expenses) concerning liability for the payment of contributions shall apply to the persons referred to under paragraph 1(a) and the members of their families. In respect of family members, the contributions shall be levied on the person from whom the right to health care is derived with exception of the members of the family of military personnel who are living in another member state who shall be levied directly."

Justification

This amendment will ensure that members of the families of military personnel living outside the Netherlands are also insured under the Care Insurance Act (ZVW).

Amendment 9

ANNEX, POINT 9, POINT (B)
Annex VI, heading "R. Netherlands", point (4), point (a) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

a) Any employed or self-employed person who is no longer insured under the Act of 11 December 1975 on Invalidity (AAW), the Act of 24 April 1997 on Invalidity Insurance (Self-Employed Persons) (WAZ), the Act of 18 February 1966 on Invalidity Insurance (WAO) and/or the Act of 10 November 2005 on Work and Income according to Labour Capacity (WIA) is considered to be so when the risk materialises, for the purposes of the application of the provisions of Chapter 3 of Title III of the Regulation, if that person is insured under the legislation of another Member State for the same risk or, failing that, if a benefit is due in pursuance of the legislation of another Member State. The latter condition shall be considered to be fulfilled, however, in the case referred to in Article 48 (1).

a) Any employed or self-employed person who is no longer insured under the Act of 11 December 1975 on Invalidity (AAW), the Act of 24 April 1997 on Invalidity Insurance (Self-Employed Persons) (WAZ), and/or the Act of 18 February 1966 on Invalidity Insurance (WAO) or the Act of 10 November 2005 on Work and Income according to Labour Capacity (WIA) is considered to be so when the risk materialises, for the purposes of the application of the provisions of Chapter 3 of Title III of the Regulation, if that person is insured under the legislation of another Member State for the same risk or, failing that, if a benefit is due in pursuance of the legislation of another Member State. The latter condition shall be considered to be fulfilled, however, in the case referred to in Article 48 (1).

Amendment 10

ANNEX, POINT 9, POINTS (B A) AND (BB) (new)
Annex VI, heading R. Netherlands, point 5, title and point (b a) (new) (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

 

(ba) Under heading "R. NETHERLANDS" the title of point 5 is replaced by:

"5. Application of the Netherlands Child Care Act (Toepassing van de Nederlandse wet kinderopvang)";

(bb) Under heading "R. NETHERLANDS" a new subpoint is added under point 5:

 

"(ba) If in a family, pursuant to Title II, both parents are subject to the law of another Member State, there is an entitlement to Dutch child care allowance. The allowance is reduced by the difference between the foreign and the Dutch child benefit."

Justification

This amendment will ensure that single people and families in which both parents work in Germany or Belgium as frontier workers are still given an entitlement to Dutch child care allowance.

Amendment 11

ANNEX, POINT 10
Annex VIII, heading "J. Ireland" (Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71)

In Annex VIII, the heading "I. IRELAND" is replaced by the following:

In Annex VIII, the heading "J. IRELAND" is replaced by the following:

"I. IRELAND

"J. IRELAND

Child benefits, orphan's (contributory) allowance and increases of widow's (contributory) pension and widower's (contributory) pension payable in respect of children eligible under the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 and subsequent amending legislation".

Child benefit, guardian's payment (contributory) and increases of widow's (contributory) pension and widower's (contributory) pension payable in respect of children eligible under the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 and subsequent amending legislation".

Justification

The amendment takes account of changes to the titles of a number of social security payments and corrects a typographical error in the proposal.


EXPLANATORY STATEMENT

Introduction

Since 1971, Regulation (EEC) 1408/71(1) has served as the basis guaranteeing that citizens moving from one Member State to another are able to enjoy social security benefits. Practically every year Regulation 1408/71, and its implementing regulation (Regulation (EEC) 574/72(2)), are amended to take due account of developments in national social security schemes, to incorporate changes which have taken place in national legislation, and to incorporate the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union. The Regulation plays an important role in the realisation of one of the four fundamental freedoms of the European Union, namely the freedom of movement. The fact that it is possible to live, work and move freely anywhere in the European Union owing to the rapid elimination of economic and administrative obstacles is indeed one of the tangible advantages which the European Union offers its citizens.

The proposal before us does not concern either the substance or the merits of specific social security provisions, given that, under Community law, it is the Member States which are responsible for establishing their own social security systems. The proposal confines itself to updating Regulation (EEC) 1408/71 to take account of the changes which have taken place in social security legislation, particularly in Ireland, Hungary, Poland, the Netherlands and Austria, in order to ensure effective coordination among the Member States on social security benefits.

Although the proposed changes are essentially technical in nature, they have repercussions on the everyday lives and right to social security benefits of EU citizens living, working or travelling in another Member State.

One important point needs to be stressed in this connection: this proposal comes at a time when the radical recasting and replacement of Regulation 1408/71 has already been approved (Regulation (EC) 883/2004(3)). However, the new text, which has already entered into force, cannot be put into practice because the new implementing regulation (which will replace the old Regulation 574/1972) has not yet been completed. Consequently the two new regulations repealing the old Regulations 1408/71 and 574/72 are unlikely to be put into practice before the entry into force of the implementing regulation, probably in 2008. It is therefore important to continue with this annual scrutiny of the regulations still in force, so as to guarantee legal certainty and improve the protection of the rights of the persons affected. This annual revision is also important in view of the substance of the issues dealt with: definitions of the terms ‘employed person’ and ‘self-employed person’ when these cannot be established on the basis of national legislation (Annex I, Section1), definition of ‘member of the family’ when national legislation does not permit a distinction to be drawn between family members and other persons (Annex I, Part 2), special schemes for self-employed persons excluded from the scope of the Regulation (Annex II, Section 1), special childbirth or adoption allowances excluded from the scope of the Regulation (Annex II, Section 2), special non-contributory benefits supplied solely to persons on the territory of the Member State of residence, thus constituting an exception to the rule of exportable benefits (Annex II a), existing bilateral conventions which were in force before the implementation of the Regulation in the Member States concerned (Annex III), legislation under which the amount of invalidity benefit is independent of the length of insurance periods (Annex IV, Section A), cases where the calculation of benefit may be waived because it will not yield a higher amount (Annex IV, Section C), special procedures for implementation in certain Member States (Annex VI), and schemes that provide only for family allowances or supplementary or special allowances for orphans (Annex VIII). All these elements are contained in the Commission proposal before us.

In short, the Regulation continues to determine whether citizens continue to enjoy the special benefits accorded to them by their Member State of origin, in which cases these benefits may be exported, or whether a corresponding benefit exists in the new Member State of residence of the person concerned.

Rapporteur’s position

The Commission proposes an update to the 1408/71 regulations taking account of the amendments which have been made to national social security legislation, particularly in Ireland, Hungary, Poland, the Netherlands and Austria. It also seeks to make changes and technical improvements to the regulation. In other words, it is a technical, transitory regulation, given the imminent application of the new Regulation 883/2004 and its implementing provisions.

Your rapporteur welcomes the proposed amendments, which seek to facilitate the coordination of social security schemes. He has made a number of amendments, also technical in nature, seeking to simplify the proposal, correct errors and omissions and update the annexes to Regulation 1408/71.

Your rapporteur seriously considered the possibility of tabling more substantial amendments in his report, but decided in the end that it was preferable at this stage to confine himself to tabling those amendments which were absolutely necessary for the moment to ensure the normal functioning of Regulation 1408/71, given that it will soon be replaced by Regulation 883/2004. Your rapporteur considers that it would be more advisable to table amendments of substance to Regulation 883/2004 on the coordination of social security systems, and in particular to the substance of Annex XI (Bozkurt report), and to the proposal for a regulation fixing the procedure for implementing Regulation 883/2004 on the coordination of social security systems (Lambert report) which should be discussed in our committee some time in the next few months.

This view is also shared by the social partners who have been consulted.

In its contacts with the Commission and Council, your rapporteur was well aware of the purely technical nature of the proposal and of the fact that the two institutions had reached an agreement on the Commission proposal and the proposed amendments.

These amendments, which seek to make the text clearer and more transparent, have the purpose of guaranteeing the necessary legal certainty until the entry into force of the new regulation and its implementing regulation, and to help increase legal protection for citizens and remove the obstacles which still hamper the mobility of workers within the European Union. It is important to facilitate the implementation of the principle of mobility, which was reaffirmed at the Lisbon summit as an instrument for boosting employment, and was intensively promoted throughout 2006, the European Year of Workers' Mobility. It is therefore important that the conditions, and in particular the social conditions of mobility should be precisely defined.

(1)

Council Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71 on the application of social security schemes to employed persons, to self-employed persons and to members of their families moving within the Community (OJ L 149, 5.7.1971, p.2).

(2)

Regulation (EEC) No 574/72 of the Council fixing the procedure for implementing Regulation (EEC) No 1408/71 (OJ L 74, 27.3.1972, p.1).

(3)

Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 29 April 2004 on the coordination of social security systems (OJ L 166, 30.4.2004, p.1).


PROCEDURE

Title

Application of social security schemes to employed persons, to self-employed persons and to members of their families moving within the Community

References

COM(2007)0159 - C6-0104/2007 - 2007/0054(COD)

Date submitted to Parliament

30.3.2007

Committee responsible

       Date announced in plenary

EMPL

26.4.2007

Committee(s) asked for opinion(s)

       Date announced in plenary

FEMM

6.9.2007

 

 

 

Not delivering opinions

       Date of decision

FEMM

2.10.2007

 

 

 

Rapporteur(s)

       Date appointed

Csaba Őry

7.5.2007

 

 

Discussed in committee

9.10.2007

17.12.2007

 

 

Date adopted

18.12.2007

 

 

 

Result of final vote

+:

–:

0:

39

1

0

Members present for the final vote

Jan Andersson, Edit Bauer, Emine Bozkurt, Iles Braghetto, Philip Bushill-Matthews, Alejandro Cercas, Ole Christensen, Derek Roland Clark, Luigi Cocilovo, Jean Louis Cottigny, Proinsias De Rossa, Richard Falbr, Carlo Fatuzzo, Ilda Figueiredo, Joel Hasse Ferreira, Stephen Hughes, Karin Jöns, Jean Lambert, Raymond Langendries, Elizabeth Lynne, Jan Tadeusz Masiel, Jiří Maštálka, Ana Mato Adrover, Maria Matsouka, Elisabeth Morin, Csaba Őry, Marie Panayotopoulos-Cassiotou, Rovana Plumb, Bilyana Ilieva Raeva, José Albino Silva Peneda, Kathy Sinnott, Ewa Tomaszewska, Anne Van Lancker, Gabriele Zimmer

Substitute(s) present for the final vote

Françoise Castex, Sepp Kusstatscher, Claude Moraes, Ria Oomen-Ruijten, Thomas Ulmer, Glenis Willmott

Last updated: 3 January 2008Legal notice