21 Apr 2022 Articles

Expert Reflection: The EU Directive on Platform Work

1 minute read


Expert Economist and Senior Managing Director, Jorge Padilla, recently commented in the Brussels Times article, “Rideshare platforms oppose EU directive to improve worker conditions”, on how the new EU directive on platform work will effect the employment status of gig workers.

The EU directive aims to require gig workers in the EU to be classified as employees and entitled to social and labour rights, rather than independent contractors. In the article, Jorge Padilla discusses analyses conducted for Move EU, an organisation of platform mobility companies operating in Europe, on the impact of the EU directive on employment status. He argues that ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Bolt would lose their ability to manage supply and demand for their services under the new directive. The current model enables “companies to keep costs low enough to operate” without a “long-term relationship between platform workers and platform companies”.

Jorge suggests that “excess capacity - or paying for drivers when there aren’t rides for them to take – means apps need to micromanage and cut employment”, which could translate into an underutilised labour force and losing over 148,000 drivers.

The article dives into the contrasting debate among critics, with some calling for platforms to find a more sustainable business model within “the same laws and regulations that existing companies in their sectors already abide by”, while opponents of the directive and the platform companies themselves believe tough legislation “stifles the innovation of such companies”.

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Accreditation: An article from Brussels Times, “Rideshare platforms oppose EU directive to improve worker conditions”, by Helen Lyons on 26 March 2022

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