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J&P news in the field of labour migration

  • Envisaged relaxation of restrictions on access to labour market for Croatian workers;
  • from now on somewhat easier to obtain single permit for companies that will be entered into the register of companies with high added value and register of innovative start-ups;
  • the EU Parliament will confirm the renewal of legislation on posted workers with the aim of providing greater security to workers;
  • from now on it will be possible to submit some of the single permit applications also online;

From 1 July 2018 without any restrictions on access to labour market for Croatian workers?
Since the entry of Croatia into the European Union, an interim period has applied to Croatian workers for employment in Slovenia. Pursuant to the special legislative regime, the validity of which was prolonged until 1 July 2018 in 2015, the access of Croatian citizens to the Slovene labour market has been significantly more restricted than for the citizens of other EEA Member States and Switzerland. Thus, it applies during the interim period that prior to taking up an employment in Slovenia each citizen of the Republic of Croatia who has been residing legally in Slovenia for less than 2 years shall obtain an employment permit, may perform work only at the employer at which he/she obtained the employment permit, and may perform only the work for which such permit was obtained. Thereby the condition for obtaining the permit, namely that there are no other persons that could perform such work registered in the records of unemployed persons, is rather restrictive as well.

In March 2018, the Government of the Republic of Slovenia adopted an act proposal, which would prolong the above-described interim period for a further two-year period, however the proposal was not addressed in the National Assembly due to Prime Minister Cerar’s resignation. Given the expected further course of events, it is unlikely, and maybe even impossible, that the National Assembly would address on time the act proposal prolonging the interim period. Thus, it is to expect that from 1 July 2018 the access to labour market for Croatian citizens will be the same as that of the citizens of other EEA Member States and Switzerland. The lifting of restrictions is predicted to have a positive effect in particular on the companies near the border with Croatia.

Simpler and faster procedures of recruiting foreigners in companies with high added value and innovative start-ups

As of 1 July 2018 the amended Employment, Self-employment and Work of Foreigners Act (amended ZZSDT-B) will enter into force. The only novelty introduced by the amended act is a somewhat simplified procedure for obtaining single permits for the employment of workers in companies/at employers entered in the register of companies with high added value or register of innovative start-ups. With the amended act, the Government of the Republic of Slovenia wants to enable the companies entered in the said registers faster and simpler recruitment of foreigners. From now on, in the procedure of issuing consent to the single permit or in the procedure for extending the single permit and written approval, with companies/employers entered into both registers the Employment Service of Slovenia will not check the conditions for registration of employer in the business register, possible occurrence of liquidation or bankruptcy of the employer, active business operation and payment of all tax obligations of the employer (i.e. conditions from items 2, 3, 4 and 5 of Article 17 ZZSDT). According to the Government, this shall enable the said companies to fill in staff gaps faster and simpler by recruiting foreigners, while simultaneously providing the same level of protection of rights and legal certainty of migrant workers.

Renewed legislation for workers posted to another EU Member State

After several months of negotiations with the European Council and the Commission, the EU Parliament has confirmed the amendments to the Posted Workers Directive (Directive 96/71/EC) with the principal objective of providing the same and fair payment and working conditions for posted workers. Within the meaning of the Directive, posted workers are workers that have been posted by the employer to another EU Member State. The amended wording of the Directive stipulates that posted workers have to be granted all the elements of payment as received by the workers in the state to which the worker has been posted. Compared to the existing legislation this means in particular the right to different bonuses and allowances to which national workers are entitled. Moreover, employers will be obliged in certain cases to grant posted workers the rights as agreed in collective agreements. The EU Member States are obliged to transpose the amendments to the Posted Workers Directive into their national law within 2 years.

Possibility of electronic submission of single permit applications

From now on, it will be possible to submit applications for single permit for residence and work and applications for single permit in the field of research and higher education of a foreigner also electronically, via the e-VEM portal. Nevertheless, it will be still possible to submit the applications for both types of single permit also in physical form at the competent administrative unit. The electronic submission of applications is predicted to enable a faster processing of applications, which is a complex procedure that takes months.