European Labour Authority (ELA), together with the European Commission, launched the IMI-PROVE Programme
The Internal Market Information (IMI) System is an online tool for the exchange of information between public authorities involved in the practical implementation of EU labour law, including the posting of workers and road transport.
Users of the System from all Member States gathered in Bratislava and online this week to exchange their practices and to discuss possible improvements on the modules for posting of workers.
“This is yet another example of how ELA is focused on concrete operations”, said ELA’s Executive Director Cosmin Boiangiu in his opening statement.
The first event was already successful in identifying challenges to overcome and concrete follow-up activities that ELA and the Commission will focus on in the next months.
Objectives of the IMI-PROVE
The IMI-PROVE is a programme under the European Labour Authority (ELA)’s Mutual Learning and Understanding Framework (MLUF), which encompasses various capacity building activities offered by ELA to the posting of workers stakeholders in the EU. The IMI-PROVE was established in close cooperation with the European Commission to reinforce cooperation and mutual assistance between Member States by stimulating a more robust and effective use of the Internal Market Information (IMI) System modules for posting of workers and road transport.
The programme will tap into the expertise and practical knowledge of the network of national IMI users to:
- Establish a forum where Members States can share information, good practices, and experience to develop joint solutions to improve the take-up of the IMI modules of the posting of workers and road transport;
- Propose solutions to practical obstacles in the use of these modules, and build the capacity and skills of national IMI users to utilise the IMI modules’ capabilities related to posting of workers and road transport thoroughly with the support of peers from other countries.
Four strands of the IMI-PROVE Programme
The IMI-PROVE Programme 2022 activities are designed to assist Member States in sharing their experience on IMI System modules for posting of workers and road transport, with a view to ensure better cooperation with each other. To do so, the MLUP will build on the preliminary work done by ELA, in consultation with the Member States and the European Commission and will be structured on four Pillars, as described here below:
- Pillar I: Underused modules: what can be improved?
There are four posting of workers modules in IMI System, of which three are significantly less-used than the one on ‘Information Requests’. The so called Uniform Instrument, that includes the ‘Request to notify a decision imposing a penalty/fine’ module and the ‘Request to recover a penalty/fine’ module together with the module on ‘Communication of Irregularities’
- Pillar II: Challenges related to the technical setup of IMI (vis-à-vis national practices)
During the meeting in November 2021, several experts indicated that they encounter some challenges related to the technical IMI setup in their work, for example related to the built-in translation function in IMI and/or limits on sharing of documents and that they would benefit from a wider discussion on possible improvements. ELA thus answers this call and offers a forum for discussion on these technical issues, where appropriate vis-à-vis national practices, tomorrow, right after the discussion on Pillar 1.
The first event in June 2022 was dedicated to two pillars: Pillar 1, as well as to Pillar 2.
- Pillar III: Predefined questions in the IMI-module on information requests.
Some of the national users of IMI encounter difficulties related to the content of the predefined questions in the IMI System, in both understanding the question as well as in providing a (complete and) satisfactory answer. ELA intends to organize a series of online meetings, starting in September 2022 to discuss these difficulties with the Member States. The sessions will be divided on the basis of results of the questionnaire.
The objective of these meetings is for the participants to discuss issues hindering the use of the posting of workers modules of the IMI System. These discussions should lead to a report with recommendations for improvement of the predefined questions.
- Pillar IV: The use of the new modules for road transport vis-à-vis posting of workers modules
The new IMI-modules for road transport may present IMI-users with new experiences and questions on the use of the pre-existing IMI-modules for posting.
ELA intends to organize a hybrid meeting on this topic on the 6-7 December 2022, in Bratislava, in combination with the final plenary workshop for national liaison offices and – possibly – with a workshop on the fight against letterbox-companies in road transport. Two experts on IMI System modules per Member State are invited to come to Bratislava in person, representing the labour and transport aspects of administrative cooperation among Member States. Other colleagues can also contribute to the discussion online. The aim is to have one expert on the ‘regular’ posting of workers modules and one expert on the road transport modules present per Member State.
The objective is also here, to create a community of practitioners, exchange views and practices related to the use of the IMI-modules for road transport vis-à-vis the posting of workers modules to gain a better understanding of the way Member States are cooperating in the area of road transport and to provide more clarity for the IMI users. The session will also be dedicated to exchanging experience and first views/comments on the use of the three new modules of IMI System for road transport.
Read more about IMI: https://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/imi-net/about/index_en.htm
Read more about IMI-PROVE PROGRAMME: https://www.ela.europa.eu/sites/default/files/2022-06/ELA_Brochure_A4.pdf
 The Internal Market Information (IMI) System is a secure, multilingual online tool that facilitates the Exchange of information between public authorities involved in the practical implementation of EU law.