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Consumer Affairs Council

Volume 447: debated on Thursday 15 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the Government’s position was in the negotiations on the Working Time Directive at the Consumer Affairs Council meeting in Luxembourg on 1 June 2006; what the outcome was of the meeting; and if he will make a statement. (76755)

The Government’s policy and negotiating priorities for the new Working Time Directive remain to achieve a solution that retains the voluntary individual opt out from the 48 hour weekly working limit and that addresses the problems caused to Europe’s health and emergency services by the European Court of Justice’s rulings on the SiMAP and Jaeger cases.

Member states failed to reach political agreement at the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council in Luxembourg. The UK Government tried to find a way forward, but there remained two opposing views.