Luxembourg : Temporary agency work and collective bargaining in the EU

  • Observatory: EurWORK
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  • Published on: 18 Diciembre 2008



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In 2007, 8003 temporary agency workers were employed (on average, compared with 5489 in 2004) in the TAW sector. Mission durations varied from 1 day in the hotel and restaurant sector to more than 80 days in the financial intermediary sector. The turnover of the temporary agency work sector has been estimated at around 290,000,000 Euros for 2007. 69% of the TAW workforces are French cross border workers. The TAW sector is regulated by the labour code, which specifies the mission contract, the working conditions and the conditions to open a TAW agency. The collective agreement was renewed by an endorsement in 2007 between the OGB-L, LCGB and the employer organisation ULEDI.

Section 1. Definitions

1) In your country, is there a statutory definition of:

a) temporary agency work?

Yes, article L. 131-1 of the Labour code defines the “contrat de mission” (mission contract) as the contract by which a temporary worker commits himself towards a temporary agency company, to accomplish for a user company a defined and a non-permanent task, which is authorized by the law in virtue of article L. 122-1 (see point 2.3 3 below).

b) agency worker?

Yes, article L. 131-1 of the Labour code defines the temporary agency worker as someone who commits himself within the framework of a mission contract, to be at the temporary disposal to one or more user companies in order to accomplish a precise and non-permanent task, which is authorized by the law in virtue of article L. 122-1.

c) user enterprise?

No.

2) Is there a collectively agreed definition of:

a) temporary agency work?

No, the collective agreement simply uses the expression “travail intérimaire” (temporary work).

b) agency worker?

No, the collective agreement simply uses the expression “travailleur intérimaire” (temporary worker).

c) user enterprise?

No, the collective agreement simply uses the expression “utilisateur” (user).

These expressions are not defined explicitly in the collective agreement but appear as such in the text.

3) In your country, would you describe TAW as a sector in its own right?

Yes, the collective agreement is a sectorial collective agreement with a declared general obligation for all employers and workers in the profession, activity, branch or economic sector in accordance with the Labour code (art. 164-8). The declared general obligation gives a precise definition of its field of application.

Section 2. Regulatory framework

1) Have there been any changes in the law concerning TAW since 2004?

a) Yes b) No

No, there has been no change in the law concerning TAW since 2004.

2) How is TAW regulated in your country?

a) Is there a legal framework specifically for TAW; and/or is it covered by general labour law (including case law/ jurisprudence)?

Temporary agency work is covered by the following articles of the Labour Code:

- L.131-1 to L.131-21 concerning temporary work.

- L.132-1 to L.132-4 concerning temporary loan of workforces.

- L.133-1 to L.133-3 concerning the availability of TAW workers.

- L.134-1 to L.134-3 concerning consultation, control and sanctions.

- L. 411-1 and L.411-2 concerning staff delegation.

- L. 413-6 concerning eligibility and electorate votes.

b) What is the role, if any, of collective labour agreements and self-regulation?

The objective of the collective agreement entered into between the trade unions OGB-L and LCGB and the employer organisation ULEDI is to guarantee coordination of work, to maintain social peace at company and professional level, as well as to ensure the social partners play their part in the fight against unfair competition and illegal work under the condition that the collective agreement will be declared with a general obligation.

3) What is regulated in these provisions? In particular, does it cover:

a) use of agency work (e.g. length of assignment, sectoral bans, permitted reasons of use, number of agency workers per company, other)

Article L.131 of the Labour code refers the article L.122-1 that regulates the use of temporary work contracts. By doing this, the legislator relates the legislation of common labour law to a specific form of work such as temporary agency work. The objective of the legislator is to guarantee to the temporary agency worker a level of protection that is approaching the common labour law.

The use of temporary work is allowed in the following cases:

- Replacement of a temporarily absent employee or whose contract has been suspended.

- Seasonal work.

- Employment for which, in certain activity sectors, it is usual not to resort to permanent employment.

- Execution of a punctual and occasional task, which is not part of the usual activity of the company.

- Temporary increase in activity.

- Execution of urgent tasks in order to prevent accidents.

- Insertion of unemployed people.

The length of a mission is limited by article L.131-8 of the Labour code, and cannot exceed 12 months, renewal inclusive (article L.131-9; an exception is allowed in the case of seasonal work, to replace a temporarily absent employee or whose contract is suspended, or for employment for which, in certain activity sectors, it is usual not to resort to permanent employment).

b) the form of the contract (e.g.project, fixed-term, special contract, open ended, etc.)

The contracts take the form of a “mission contract”, which commits the temporary agency worker to the TAW agency. As explained before, article L.131 of the Labour code refers to article L.122-1 that regulates the use of temporary work contracts. By doing this, the legislator is relating the legislation of the common labour law to a specific form of work such as temporary agency work. The objective of the legislator is to guarantee to the temporary agency worker a level of protection that is approaching the common labour law.

Article L.131-6 specifies that the mission contract is considered to be a work contract and that no proof is allowed against this presumption.

The length of a mission is limited by article L.131-8 of the Labour code, and it cannot exceed 12 months, renewal inclusive (article L.131-9). An exception is allowed in the case of seasonal work, to replace a temporarily absent employee or whose contract is suspended, or for employment for which, in certain activity sectors, it is usual not to resort to permanent employment. If the mission contract has no specific ending term, it must be concluded for a minimum duration and it will have as its ending term the return of the absent worker or the accomplishment of the purpose for which it has been concluded.

Other specifications are:

- The mission contract must include the clause stating that the employment of the TAW worker by the user enterprise is not forbidden (art. L.131-6).

- The mission contract may include a trial period (art. L.131-7).

- If, at the end of a mission contract, the TAW worker continues to work for the user enterprise without a work contract or without a new mission contract, the TAW worker is considered to be committed to the user company through a permanent work contract.

The reasons to use a TAW worker are specified in the contract between the TAW agency and the user company and it must be established individually for every TAW worker (article L.131-4). The same article specifies that the availability contract (“Contrat de mise à disposition”) must include: the motive for the TAW work request (see above under a) for the allowed motives), in the case of an absent worker, the name of this worker, the duration of the mission, the characteristics of the mission, the required qualification, the place and the normal timetable and the indication of the wage of a worker executing the same tasks and having the same qualification as the TAW worker.

Article L.131-6 stipulates that the mission contract, i.e., the contract binding the TAW agency to every single TAW worker, must be delivered by a written letter and addressed to the TAW worker, at the latest two days after the beginning of the mission.

c) social security and social benefits

Article L. 122-10 of the Labour code prescribes that, unless otherwise stipulated, the legal and conventional provisions applicable to employees bound by a permanent contract are also applicable to employees bound by a non-permanent contract.

Article L.131-12 points out that the TAW agency is solely responsible for wages, social and tax charges related to the temporary worker.

Article L.131-13 of the Labour Code points out that the TAW agency has the obligation to produce the social and tax deductions which are applicable to wages.

d) conditions to open a TAW agency (e.g. license or authorisation schemes, supervision by public authorities, financial requirements, or others - please specify)

The Labour code specifies the conditions to open a TAW agency in the articles L.131-2 and art.131-3:

- Article L.131-2 specifies:

- No-one can practise the activity of TAW entrepreneurship without the approval of the Minister of labour and employment on advice by the ADEM and the ITM.

- The applicant must have the approval allowing the access to the profession given by the appropriate Ministry.

- The approvals which are covered by article L131-2 must be refused if the head office of the TAW company is located outside the territory of the EU.

- The person(s) who is/are assuming the management of the TAW company must present the necessary guaranties of his/her professional worthiness (“honorabilité professionnelle”) and professional qualifications. The conditions are specified by a national decree (“Règlement grand-ducal).

- Article 131, in its general terms, stipulates that the approval is subject to the conditions that:

- The TAW activity is exclusively practised by the TAW company.

- A financial guarantee, which at any moment, in the case of a failure, ensures the payment of remunerations and its appurtenances, indemnities as well as the social and tax charges.

- The required guarantee must be the result of a surety commitment by a bank, a financial establishment or an insurance company.

- The amount of the guarantee may be revised at any moment and may be fixed in relation to turnover.

- The approval of the Ministry of labour and employment can not exceed twelve months.

- An extension of the approval must be requested three months before the expiry date. The extension is confirmed for 24 months if the Minister of Labour does not refuse the extension request before the expiry date.

- The approval of the Ministry of Labour may be given for an undetermined period if the TAW company has practised its activity for three years without interruption.

According to the representative of the ULEDI; the amount of the financial guarantee is at the moment 87,000 Euros for the first year of activity. For the following years of activity, the guarantee has been fixed at 11% of turnover.

e) business activities/services delivered by TW agencies (e.g. prohibition to provide other services than TAW)?

A TAW agency can not practise other services or conduct other business. This is regulated by article L. 131-3 of the Labour code. The authorization by the Minister of Labour and employment depends on the condition that a TAW agency exclusively practices temporary agency work.

f) third-national companies or temporary agency workers (e.g. activities of foreign agencies)?

Article L. 131-2 of the Labour code emphasizes that the ministerial authorization granted by the Minister of Labour and employment, on advice by the ITM and the ADEM must be refused if a TAW agency has its head office or its main establishment located outside the territory of the Member States of the European Union.

4) Do any regulations (by law and/or collective bargaining in the TAW sector) specify equal treatment rights for agency workers with permanent workers in the user enterprise concerning:

a) pay

The Labour code (Article L. 131-13) emphasizes that the payment of a temporary agency worker by a TAW agency cannot be below the wage of a permanent worker, after the trial period, with the same qualification or with an equivalent qualification employed under the same conditions as a permanent worker by the user company.

If the user company does not employ a permanent worker having the same or an equivalent qualification as the one of the temporary agency worker, the income shall not be lower than those prescribed by the sectorial collective agreement applied to the temporary worker, or otherwise, shall be the same as a permanent worker with the same or an equivalent qualification working at the same workstation in another company.

Also, the collective agreement specifies that the payment of the temporary agency worker must include all the remuneration elements of the user company: bonuses and/or appurtenances like vouchers or travel expenses.

If, during a mission the permanent workers receive a salary increase, the user company must notify the TAW agency, which, without any delay, has to apply the new wage to the temporary agency worker.

b) training

The endorsement to the collective agreement of May 13th 1998, which was been agreed at the beginning of 2007, will put in place a sectorial training fund until the end of the running time of the present collective agreement. The modalities, financing and functioning shall be worked out by a joint commission. The training covered in the framework of this sectorial fund will be, for temporary agency workers, training in safety and health matters.

c) other terms or conditions of employment?

Article L. 122-10 of the Labour code, prescribes that, unless otherwise stipulated, the legal and conventional provisions applicable to employees bound by a permanent contract are also applicable to employees bound by a non-permanent contract.

Article 8 of the collective agreement specifies the rights of the temporary agency workers:

- The temporary agency workers have access in the user company in the same conditions as the permanent staff to the collective facilities, notably to catering and transport means.

- The temporary workers must be entitled to the same working, safety and protection equipment as the permanent workers.

Article 11 of the collective agreement indicates that the normal working time is 8 hours a day and 40 hours a week according to the Labour code.

5) Do TAW workers have the right to information, consultation and representation?

The temporary agency workers have the right to information, consultation (employee representation) and to reclaim and consult their personal file according to article L. 414-6 of the Labour code. However, they do not have the right to be represented. Article L. 413-6 defines that temporary agency workers do not have the right to vote or to be elected to the employee representation bodies.

6) Is there a control/enforcement mechanism regarding any TAW regulation?

If yes,

a) is there a special labour inspectorate or a bi-partite body governing TAW?

In general, it is the ITM that controls the TAW activities with regard to their lawfulness.

b) are there any sanctions/penalties for not respecting the regulations (whether stemming from law and/or collective agreements)?

In general, articles L.133-2, L.133-3 and article L.134-3 of the Labour code provides legal means of sanctioning violations of the legal provisions concerning temporary agency work. The sanctions are: invalidity of the mission contract, several liability (payment of wages, benefits as well as social and tax charges) and, finally, a fine applied inasmuch as there are workers for whom provisions have not been respected. The TAW agency runs the risk of receiving a ban on practicing TAW for a given period.

7) Are there any procedures governing use of TAW and strike breaking?

In particular, can workers on strike be replaced by agency workers?

The collective agreement points out in article 14.3 that the TAW agencies will not make available temporary agency workers to user companies in order to replace strikers.

Section 3. Social dialogue and collective bargaining

1) Is there any employers’ association(s) for TAW firms in your country?

If yes, please provide any data on membership (e.g. sectoral coverage of firms/workers)

ULEDI is the employers association and was founded in 1994. It has 19 members and represents 62% of turnover for the sector. The sector has 42 TAW companies segmented into 72 TAW agencies.

In general, the TAW companies in Luxembourg have a permanent staff of approximately 280 employees.

2) Is there any union(s) specifically for agency workers?

If no, have any unions or confederations targeted the recruitment of agency workers?

No, the OGB-L has a department for services and energy that is in charge of temporary agency work.

launched any campaigns around agency workers’ rights?

No.

3) Collective bargaining levels

Is TAW governed by collective bargaining at:

a) intersectoral/ national level?

According to the OGB-L, TAW is governed at national level.

b) the sectoral level for TAW?

TAW is governed at sectorial level.

c) company (ie. temporary agency firm) level?

No.

4) Collective bargaining outcomes

- One of the main outcomes of the last collective bargaining, according to the OGB-L, concerns legal holidays. If the mission contract of a temporary agency worker ends the day before a legal holiday, and if the same temporary worker starts a new mission contract the day after the legal holiday at the same user company, the legal holiday must be paid to the temporary agency worker.

- According to the OGB-L, the new agreement has improved the safety and health provisions for temporary agency workers.

- The collective agreement specifies work during legal holidays and overtime work:

• Work during legal holidays will be paid at the same extra rate as is applied in the user company.

• Overtime work may only be performed within the framework specified by the law.

- The use of overtime work shall be limited to exceptional cases, notably to special tasks or to urgent tasks.

- The endorsement of the collective agreement of 13th May 1998, which was agreed at the beginning of 2007, will put in place a sectorial training fund until the end of the running time of the present collective agreement. The modalities, financing and functioning shall be worked out by a joint commission. The training covered in the framework of this sectorial fund will be, for temporary agency workers, training in safety and health matters.

- Concerning pay, benefits, working time, consultation and representation, these items are regulated by the law.

5) Are there any examples of sector- or company-level collective agreements in other sectors that restrict, permit or otherwise regulate the use of TAW within their domain?

According to the OGB-L, the Labour code (L-423-1, L.423-2 and L.423-3) emphasizes that the joint committee of companies must be consulted before the user company may resort to temporary agency work.

6) Please provide any data concerning:

a) trade union density for agency workers

The OGB-L has estimated that 5% of temporary agency workers are members of the OGB-L.

b) the coverage of collective bargaining within the sector.

The coverage is 100% because it is a sectorial collective agreement declared as general obligation.

Section 4. Employment and working conditions of TA workers

1) Please provide the most recent data (averages) on TAW employment

a) longevity of TAW employment, i.e. how long workers remain employed

According to the ULEDI, the average employment duration is 4 to 6 months. Some TAW workers are employed for years, but these are mostly exceptions.

- in the sector?

a) Financial sector: 6 to 12 months, with good chances of being employed.

b) Construction: more than 12 months, with little chance of being employed.

c) Industry sector: less than 12 months, with little chance of being employed.

- with a particular agency?

The representative of the ULEDI has emphasized that TAW is characterized by nomadism and that the TAW workers are only bound to the TAW agency by their mission contract. Nevertheless, TAW agencies have a core of temporary agency workers (80%) and only 15 to 20 % are changing agencies.

b) duration of TAW placements, i.e. i.e. the length of assignment in a user company.

Data is only available up to 2004 (table 1). For 2007, the representative of the ULEDI has approximately estimated the durations of placements (table 2).

Table 1: Comparison and evolution of the average mission contract duration by activity sector (code NACE) in days.

Sector (Nace) 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 Evolution
Construction (45) 33.1 29.50 26.27 26.53 22.25 -11.06
HORECA (55) 3.97 3.98 3.91 3.73 3.17 -0.80
Financial intermediation (65) 73.49 86.74 82.81 82.81 76.55 3.06
All sectors 31.1 27.6 22.5 22.5 20.50 -10.6

Source: IGSS , statistics by Franz Clement

Table 2: Estimation by the ULEDI of the duration of the mission contracts in days for 2007.

Sector 2007
Construction 20
Industry 10
HORECA 1
Financial intermediaries > 80

From 2000 to 2004, the duration of mission contracts in all sectors decreased. Compared to the estimation of 2007, the trend is confirmed except in the financial intermediation sector.

The representative of the ULEDI has emphasized that education is one factor that influences the duration of mission contracts. TAW workers with a good educational qualifications have good chances of being employed, while workers with low qualifications often stay for longer periods in temporary agency work.

2) Please provide any evidence from official, academic and social partner sources concerning:

a) the reasons for user companies’ usage of TAW, including any differences by sector, occupation, firm size etc.

According to the ULEDI, every sector and all companies of every size are using TAW with the exceptions of the health sector (hospitals) and the public sector. Every profession up to middle management is concerned by TAW.

The service sector is more concerned by replacements and maternity leave because of the presence of more women. Productivity peaks are mainly the reason in the industry sector whereas weekend work can basically be found in the HORECA sector.

Another reason to use TAW might be the employer’s charges, especially of those firms that are established outside of Luxembourg. As the following table emphasizes, the number of user companies which resort to temporary agency work within the framework of secondment (“détachement”) has increased since 2000.

Table 3: Evolution of the average proportion of the registered address of the user companies of temporary agency workers.

Registration address 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Evolution
Luxembourg 88.1% 86.8% 83.2% 79.1% 73.6% 70.5% 68.3% - 19.8%
Elsewhere 11.9% 13.2% 16.8% 20.9% 26.4% 29.5% 31.7% 19.8%

Source: IGSS, statistics by Franz Clement, CRD-Eures Luxembourg - CEPS/Instead.

The phenomenon of secondment is increasing and might be due to the reduced employers’ charges in Luxembourg in comparison to surrounding countries. For instance, Belgian temporary agency workers can register themselves in a TAW agency in Luxembourg and then execute their mission in France. The statistics above outline this practise.

According to the OGB-L, reasons for using temporary agency work are:

- Replacement.

- Maternity leave.

- Productivity peaks.

- Weekend work.

b) reasons for workers participation in the sector and levels of satisfaction, including any differences by age, sex, education etc.

No data available.

Reasons to participate in the sector:

The representative of the OGB-L has estimated that 80% of temporary workers have chosen temporary agency work because of an unemployment situation or the necessity to earn money. For the remaining 20% of temporary agency workers, the OGB-L estimates that these workers have willingly chosen temporary agency work because of their need for flexibility. These people are, according to the OGB-L, often highly qualified as, for example, computer specialists who work for 6 months and then living off the money they have earned.

According to the ULEDI, the main reason for TAW workers to accept temporary agency work is that, firstly, they remain in contact with the employment market, without distinction of age, gender or education.

The second reason is, after the loss of a job, to find a new job. 30% of this population have found a new permanent job, according to the representative of the ULEDI.

The construction sector does not employ many temporary agency workers after their missions. This might be linked to the organisation of construction companies, which might not have the capability to hire TAW workers, even if they are using TAW workers the whole year round.

Level of satisfaction:

According to the OGB-L, sometimes there are problems with the payments of wages.

Based on its experience, the OGB-L has emphasized that some companies do not respect the law because they are in a difficult situation.

3) In practice, which rules and procedures may apply to temporary-agency workers in contrast to other workers in the user company?

Yes, there exist differences according to the OGB-L:

- The temporary workers do not have the right to be represented. Article L. 413-6 defines that temporary agency workers do not have the right to vote or to be elected to employee representation bodies of a company.

- The wages are not always the same, as is specified in the article L. 131-13. The representative of the OGB-L has emphasized that this practise is prohibited by the law but it is a reality. Temporary workers who have mission contracts for two or three months accept these conditions because they have often no choice.

- Concerning the end of the year bonus (“13e mois”), temporary agency workers do not receive this bonus. Normally, they should receive an amount proportional to the length of their mission contract. For example if they have worked for 6 months, they should receive six thirteenths of the bonus. But, according to the OGB-L, even if they have 7 months mission contracts they do not receive anything.

- Temporary agency workers normally have the right to two paid free days per month according to article L.131-12. Article L.131-12 specifies that every temporary agency worker, independent of the length of the mission contract, has the right to take his holiday or to ask for payment thereof in kind. This article has also been specified in the collective agreement.

But in practise, for mission contracts of two or three months, temporary agency workers could not take their free days. Sometimes they are paid out.

Section 5. The extent and composition of TAW.

1) For 2004 and 2007, please state

a) the number of agency workers

According to STATEC, 5489 temporary workers were employed in 2004 and 8003 (average) TAW workers were employed for the first ten months of 2007.

The representative of the ULEDI has estimated that in 2007 approximately 7500 TAW workers were employed (in full time equivalent).

As the STATEC has emphasized, since mid-2006, TAW is slowing down but still continues to progress ( 10%). The share of TAW in salaried employment is 2.5% for the ten first months of 2007 (2.4% for the same period in 2006, and 1.6% ten years ago).

In addition, the STATEC points out that the number of Luxembourgers working for TAW agencies is decreasing (18.6% for the three first months in 2007). The majority of the temporary workers live in France (69%), 8% live in Belgium and 4.5% in Germany. Concerning secondment (“détachement”), 20% of the TAW workers are sent to a foreign country to work.

b) total reventues of the TAW sector

The TAW sector had a turnover of approximately 290,000,000 Euros in 2007, according to the ULEDI.

2) What proportion of the TAW workforce is currently

a) male/ female?

In 2004, the proportion male / female was 77.4% / 22.6%.

According to the ULEDI, the number of women in TAW is increasing. For 2007, the proportion has been estimated at 74% male and 26 % female TAW workers by the representative of the ULEDI.

b) full/part time?

No data available.

The ULEDI estimates that the proportion of part time work is less than 10% in the TAW sector.

c) young (<c. 25) or older (>c. 50) workers?

At the moment the only information available reflects the situation in the second half of 2003.

Graph 1: Age of the TAW workers in the second half of 2003

lu0807019q.tmp00.jpg

Source: IGSS

In the second half of 2003, 2142 TAW workers less than 25 years old and 413 TAW workers older than 50 years were employed.

For 2007, no data is available, but the representative of the ULEDI estimates that the average age of temporary agency workers is increasing and that more and more middle aged and older workers are applying for temporary agency work.

3) Has there been any changes to the TAW sector in terms of

a) concentration, i.e. proportion of employees or turnover accounted for by the largest firms?

In general, and according to the representative of the ULEDI, there has been no major change in the TAW sector.

French TAW workers still represent the biggest proportion among TAW workers (69% in 2007), but as table 4 displays, a significant increasing number of German cross border temporary agency workers can be noted. The possible causes of this change might be:

- The slow down of the German economy in 2003.

- The number of German banks in Luxembourg, having a tendency to hire German temporary agency workers.

- The existence of qualifications in Germany that are not necessarily present in Luxembourg; this could be a complementary explanation.

Table 4: Breakdown of the average proportion of temporary agency workers by nationality of adjoining countries to Luxembourg according to whether they are residents or cross border workers (in %).

  Nationality 2nd sem. 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Evolution
Cross-border workers Belgium 87.1 88.4 88.5 89.8 90.6 90.8 3.7
Germany 68.2 70.4 82.5 84.2 89.8 90.0 21.8
France 95.5 95.4 96.0 96.0 96.0 95.9 0.4
Luxembourg 8.8 8.1 10.1 11.1 9.3 11.2 2.4
Residents Belgium 12.9 11.6 11.5 10.2 9.4 9.2 -3.7
Germany 31.8 29.6 17.5 15.8 10.2 10.0 -21.8
France 4.5 4.6 4.0 4.0 4.0 4.1 -0.4
Luxembourg 91.2 91.9 89.9 88.9 90.7 88.8 -2.4

Source: IGSS statistics by Franz Clement.

Read: In 2002, from 100% of German temporary agency workers 70.4% were cross border workers and 29.6% lived in Luxembourg.

b) internationalisation, i.e. number/significance of multinational TAW firms?

According to the OGB-L, there has been a clear change towards an internationalisation of TAW firms because of the possibilities offered by the Luxembourgish temporary agency worker market.

The representative of the ULEDI has emphasized that globalisation has occurred but that it is limited to the region (Grande-Région). Mainly French TAW agencies, which want to benefit from the lower social costs in Luxembourg, are using the secondment legislation to send the TAW workers outside of Luxembourg. 20% of turnover is realized outside of Luxembourg.

4) What is your evaluation of the availability and quality of statistical data concerning TAW in your country?

Apart from the basic data on TAW published by the STATEC and EURES, little recent data is available.

Differences in the number of TAW workers may exist and are related to the methodology. The representative of the ULEDI expressed the number of workers in full time equivalent, whereas the STATEC or EURES used averages

Commentary by the NC

According to the ULEDI, the EU-level regulation is promoting the mobility of workers, but Luxembourg’s legislation has established a number of constraints that are detrimental to Luxembourg companies in comparison to TAW agencies outside of Luxembourg (for instance, the number of contracts allowed). The ULEDI has argued that TAW should be harmonized at EU level and that there should be fewer constraints. For instance, the representative pointed to the situation in the UK or the Netherlands where the legislation includes less constraints and where the TAW sector is more dynamic and has progressed.

He has also pointed out that this does not mean that the principle of equal treatment of TAW workers, in comparison to the permanent staff, must be reconsidered, but that, in general, TAW work should be facilitated.

The representative of the OGB-L has underlined that TAW should remain an exception and that the primary employment market is the most important. TAW should only be allowed for special situations in companies.

The impact of the EU regulation has been limited because of the earlier legislation on TAW and the collective agreement in Luxembourg.

Roland Maas, CEPS/INSTEAD

[2] Article L. 122-1 of the Labour code defines the use of temporary work contracts.

[21] Franz, Clement, Le travail intérimaire au Luxembourg: les évolutions les plus récentes, Les cahiers transfrontaliers d’EURES, Luxembourg n°1/2008, http://www.ceps.lu/pdf/10/art1308.pdf.

[22] The representative of the ULEDI has emphasized that in general, German banks do not often use TAW.

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