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Worker Registration Scheme

Question

Asked by Lord Roberts of Llandudno

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): The charge to individuals from other European Union countries for registration under the Worker Registration Scheme is £90. This charge applies only to the individual's first application; subsequent applications are free from charge.



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Working Time Directive

Questions

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform & Cabinet Office (Baroness Vadera): In relation specifically to doctors, nurses and ambulance staff, we anticipate that the impact of ending the opt-out would be low as it is not widely used in these fields. However, the opt-out is used widely across the economy with over 3 million employees in the UK choosing to work longer hours. Its loss to the economy as a whole would therefore be a major blow and so the Government remain committed to fight for the continuation of this important flexibility.

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

Baroness Vadera: The UK is one of 14 member states that enables workers to opt out of the maximum 48-hour working week, should they wish to do so. This flexibility is used widely across the economy.

The Government remain determined to fight for the retention of this important flexibility, which benefits

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employers and employees alike. The European Parliament's vote is to be regretted, but it is very far from the end of the matter. A large majority of member states share the UK's view that there can be no question of accepting the amendments proposed by the European Parliament, and we will continue to defend the opt-out in the process of conciliation between the Council and Parliament that will now follow.

Asked by Lord Taylor of Holbeach

Baroness Vadera: The UK is one of 14 member states that enable workers to opt out of the maximum 48-hour working week, should they wish to do so. This flexibility is used by over 3 million employees in the UK across many sectors (including agriculture) who choose to work longer hours. Loss of this opt-out would therefore cost the UK billions of pounds both in costs to industry and in lost earnings.

The Government made numerous representations to Members of the European Parliament as well as to other member states in the run-up to the European Parliament's Second Reading vote in December.

The Government remain committed to fight for the continuation of this important flexibility and will be calling on the European Council to reject the damaging amendments on the working time common position adopted by the European Parliament.


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