EU Council of Ministers reached agreement on amendment concerning unemployment benefits

2.12.2011 7.18
News item N5-58806

The EU Ministers of Employment and Social Policy reached yesterday in Brussels agreement on an amendment to the Regulation on coordination of social security systems in regard to unemployment benefits. This is the first phase in the ordinary legislative procedure of the EU. The next phase is that discussions continue with the European Parliament.

If the amendment will in due course be finally approved, EU citizens who have pursued activity in Finland as self-employed persons covered by the Self-Employed Persons Pensions Act but have their place of residence in another EU member state can, after their self-employment has ceased, obtain unemployment allowance under the Finnish legislation. A prerequisite for entitlement to the Finnish unemployment allowance is that the applicant is registered as a jobseeker in Finland and is available to the labour market as laid down in the Finnish Unemployment Allowances Act. 

Finland has questioned the amended Regulation regarding unemployment benefits and the need for special regulation. Finland is however ready to accept the compromise decision now reached, since Finland's views have now been better taken into account than before. The compromise decision only applies to self-employed persons who have formerly de facto been frontier workers. The scope of application of the compromise is clearly more limited than the scope of application in the Commission's original proposal.

There are today approximately 100 self-employed persons in Finland that could be covered by the amended Regulation. This requires that they have been registered as jobseekers in Finland after their self-employment ceased.

More information

Katriina Alaviuhkola, Ministerial Counsellor, Legal Affairs, tel. +358 50 500 2889, [email protected]