Written by Marketa Pape (2nd edition, updated on 26.10.2022).
Wage policy in the EU is a patchwork of different national traditions and legal frameworks. As a result, minimum wage levels diverge considerably, and leave many workers unprotected. While setting minimum wages is the competence of EU Member States, the EU has a supporting and complementary role.
In October 2020, the European Commission proposed a directive seeking to improve the adequacy and increase the coverage of minimum wages, while also strengthening collective bargaining as the main instrument to ensure fair wages and working conditions. It is the first time that the Commission has initiated legislative action on minimum wage protection, leaving Member States to define the specific minimum wagelevels. The ensuing debate focused on how far-reaching and binding the concrete EU requirements for national minimum wages should be.
The European Parliament adopted its position in November 2021, and the Council in December 2021. Interinstitutional negotiations concluded on 6 June 2022 with a provisional agreement that must now be confirmed by the Parliament and Council.
- October 2022: Directive on adequate minimum wages (2nd edition)
|Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on adequate minimum wages in the European Union|
|Committee responsible:||Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL)||COM(2020) 682|
|Rapporteurs:||Dennis Radtke (EPP, Germany)|
Agnes Jongerius (S&D, Netherlands)
|Shadow rapporteurs:||Monica Semedo (Renew, Luxembourg)|
Mounir Satouri (Greens/EFA, France)
Dominique Bilde (ID, France)
Anna Zalewska (ECR, Poland)
Özlem Demirel (The Left, Germany)
|Ordinary legislative |
procedure (COD) (Parliament
and Council on equal
footing – formerly ‘co-decision’)
Directive (EU) 2022/2041
OJ L 275, 25.10.2022, pp. 33–47.