Working Time Directive (Communication)

Following the failure of its last Amendment Proposal, the Commission is again planning a review of the Working Time Directive. Based on a questionnaire, the Commission intends to undertake a full-scale consultation of the social partners (workers and employers associations) at European level, in order to clarify whether the social partners also consider a review of the Working Time Directive to be necessary and, if so, what such a review could look like.
The key issues are the rules on the maximum working time, dealing with on-call time, determining rest periods and calculating the average weekly working time.


An EU-wide harmonisation of the rules on working time is generally not acceptable and, above all, infringes the principle of subsidiarity. Relocating the regulation of working time to the Member States’ level and strengthening individual contracts and the position of the social partners would be more appropriate and efficient.
The abolishment of the opt-out option and the restriction of exemptions from the rule to calculate the average weekly working time to collective agreements only, do not suit local conditions, nor the requirements of the different business sectors.