Russia / Ukraine related
sanctions – implications
THE DIGITAL SERVICE PLATFORM FOR
LEGALLY SECURE WHISTLEBLOWING
With a judgment from 2019, the ECJ had clearly set the direction: From the Working Hours Directive in conjunction with Art. 31 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (CFR), there is the obligation of the Member States to ensure that employers introduce an “objective, reliable and accessible system that can be used to measure the daily working hours worked by employees”; this follows from the right of employees to effective health protection and compliance with the legally prescribed (weekly and daily) maximum working hours. However, the ECJ had not set a specific deadline for the Member States.
Over three full years, the requirements of the ECJ then remained without any significant practical consequences, with a few exceptions that we will present below on a country-specific basis. And it was probably generally assumed that legislative intervention would be required for the practical implementation of the judgment. However, the German Federal Labour Court has now taken the ball directly and formulated directly from existing law specific obligations incumbent on the employer even without legislative measures.> Read more
“Whistleblowing” describes the uncovering of abuses, such as corruption, money laundering, and environmental hazards, by whistleblowers who have acquired insider knowledge due to their professional activity. Whistleblowers must usually accept serious personal or professional disadvantages as a result of their reports.
To protect whistleblowers, the EU already issued the Whistleblowing Directive in 2019. This directive stipulates that enterprises have the obligation to establish channels and procedures to enable reports of abuses and breaches of the law.
On 12 January 2023 the Regulation (EU) 2022/2560 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 December 2022 on foreign subsidies distorting the internal market (hereinafter: the “FSR Regulation”) has entered into force.
The FSR Regulation, which will apply from 12 July 2023, equips the European Commission (hereinafter: the “Commission”) with new tools preventing distortion in competition of the internal (EU) market resulting from “foreign subsidies” meaning subsidies granted by the non-EU states to the entities operating on the internal market.
On Tuesday, November 29, 2022, Schindhelm attorney Marcel Brinkmann (Shanghai, Taicang) together with further selected representatives of the German business community met in Shanghai for a business round table with former German Minister and China expert Rudolf Scharping to discuss the current situation of German companies in China as well as future challenges and opportunities for German investments in the Chinese market.
Although the deadline has expired, no legislative proposal or other draft for transposing Directive 2019/1937/EC on whistleblowing into national law has yet been submitted in Hungary. However, Act CLXV 2013 on complaints and communications of public interest already contains provisions that the legislature will likely supplement and/or amend in the near future.
In November of 2022, the government of the Czech Republic passed an amended draft of the Act on the Protection of Whistleblowers (the “Whistleblowing Act”) and forwarded it to the Chamber of Deputies of the Czech Parliament. The draft law is currently in its second reading, and further discussion of the law in the Chamber of Deputies is not planned until after 14 March 2023. The draft law must then be passed by the Senate and needs to be signed by the President of the Czech Republic. Only then will the legislative procedure be completed.