On 7 December 2020, Belgian Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Pascal Arimont of the Group of the European People’s Party (Christian Democrats) posed a written parliamentary question to the European Commission:
“In its answer to Question E-003246/2020 on the refusal by the Federal Employment Agency to pay short-time work benefits in the case of companies based abroad, the Commission mentioned the fact that the German authorities had eased the requirements for short-time work allowance with retroactive effect from 1 March 2020. The Commission services were to examine the nature of the provision thoroughly in order to ascertain whether it came within the scope of Regulation (EC) No 883/2004. If the short-term working benefits did not fall within the material scope of the Regulation, the Commission would examine whether it could be considered as a ‘social advantage’ in the sense of Article 7(2) of Regulation (EU) No 492/2011.
1. Has this examination taken place in the meantime?
2. If so, what conclusion was reached by the Commission?
3. If not, when is it expected to be completed?”
On 28 January 2021, Jobs and Social Rights Commissioner Nicolas Schmit responded on behalf of the European Commission stating: “In order to provide an accurate assessment of the short time work scheme, the Commission has contacted and received information from several stakeholders.
This information is being analysed to establish whether the abovementioned scheme falls within the scope of Regulation (EC) No 883/2004 or any other EU legislation.
The Commission will inform the Honourable Member of the outcome of this analysis in the course of the first six months of this year.”
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