More than 68,000 Dutchmen and women worked in Belgium last year as posted workers. These are employees sent from one EU member state to another to fulfil given contracts.
In respect of this type of worker, the Dutch comprise, by far and away, the majority group in our country. They are ahead of the Polish and the Germans.
This emerges from the presentation given yesterday (Tuesday) of two new applications in the field. These now allow firms to check more easily if the individuals that they wish to employ are playing by the rules.
Readers will recall that foreign businesses who wish to allow their employees to work in Belgium have to notify the authorities beforehand. This equally applies to foreign self-employed individuals who wish to work in Belgium for a period, and is known in both cases as the Limosa declaration.
Last year, the National Office for Social Security (ONSS) recorded some 800,000 such notifications from 163 countries.
According to ONSS figures, as alluded to earlier the Dutch are the most numerous posted workers in Belgium. Some 60,945 employees and 7,603 self-employed Dutch individuals crossed the border for such work last year. Poland brought in 23,948 employees and 10,435 self-employed individuals.
At the same time, more than 20,000 posted workers came to Belgium from Germany, France and Portugal.
In this context of these workers, one of the new applications comprises a QR code (barcode) which is able to be scanned. This allows businesses to check that Limosa declarations made are entirely in order.
A firm can also verify, using a tablet or smartphone, that a contractor with whom it wishes to work, has no outstanding social security or tax payments due.
The checks which these new applications make possible are not, in themselves, new. However, they are henceforth simpler and more efficient. This is view of the Secretary of State for Combatting Social Fraud, Philippe De Backer (of the Open Vld), who spoke at the presentation event for these new tools.
Although of use to businesses, the applications can also be used by the various inspection services.
The Brussels Times