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Transposition of the SE legislation in Spain (Final report: December 2006)

The transposition of the Regulation on employee involvement was finally approved by the Congress (lower house) with the support of all groups except the Conservative Party (Partido Popular).

The amendments proposed by the Congress were related to:

a.) the need to adapt some minor aspects of the Spanish Law on the Prevention of Risks in the Workplace (Ley de Prevención de riesgos laborales) of 1995 to the Regulation; and

b.) the need to introduce into the preamble of the transposition reference to §129.2 of the Spanish Constitution related to the promotion of company participation, the promotion of cooperatives and the access of employees to the ownership of the means of production.

The Socialist Group stressed that the Directive is the result of the agreement of the social partners at the European level. The amendments proposed by the Conservative Party (Partido Popular), which has a majority in the Senate but not in the Congress, were not approved.

The arguments of the Conservative senator Azpiroz Villar were almost identical to those of the Spanish employers’ association. He made a long polemical speech questioning the real meaning of the “involvement” of employees, on the grounds that all employees belonging to a firm are in one way or another already “involved” in the firm’s activities. He accepted the possibility of incorporating assessors representing labour in the special negotiating body, but expressed his doubts about the “unnatural” possibility of non-employees being part of the SNB. He also stressed the differences between the Spanish and “German” traditions of industrial relations in order to demonstrate the “unnatural character” of the Directive from the point of view of Spanish industrial relations. He also expressed his doubts about confidentiality issues, since technological and other sensitive issues and industrial secrets are becoming more important in modern competitive contexts.

Alle Spain