Moonlighting still a problem in the EU

The first Europe-wide survey on the issue of moonlighting conducted by the European Commission reveals that this fact is still a problem. The survey reveals the main factors for the black economy as well as countermeasures planned at the European and national levels.

The latest survey shows that moonlighting is particularly common in the south and east of Europe. In the EU an average 5% of employees admit to receive salaries in cash which are not declared, with the percentage of such employees ranging from up to 3% in most countries in continental Europe including England and Ireland to more than 10% in some countries in central and Eastern Europe. Moonlighting is particularly common among students, jobless people and self-employed people as well as in the construction industry and with regard to household services.

In order to fight against this problem the EU Commission proposes a package consisting of preventive measures, law enforcement measures and sanctions. Thus, the taxation of earned income and administrative expenses are to be further reduced in accordance with the EU stragtegy for growth and employment. Member states should revise their transitional arrangements for employees from the new EU member states. The exchange of proved and tested procedures and an appropriate evaluation of moonlighting should be improved by means of the EU´s Progress programme. Representatives of employers and employees should be actively involved in figting the black economy. Also proposed is a European platform for the co-ordination of the work of labour inspectorates.

The upcoming meeting of the European Council on December 6th provides a first opportunity for discussing a strategy in order to take effecitve measures against moonlighting. GERMAN