August 23, 2017 / 5:42 PM / a year ago

Austria says four leaders want EU deal on 'posted workers' by October

SALZBURG, Austria (Reuters) - The leaders of France, Austria, the Czech Republic and Slovakia have agreed to seek a deal on reforming the EU system of “posted workers” by a European Council meeting in October, Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern said on Wednesday.

Austria's Chancellor and head of the Social Democratic Party of Austria (SPOe) Christian Kern delivers a speech during a party assembly in Vienna, Austria, August 3, 2017. REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader

Speaking at a joint news conference with his Czech and Slovak counterparts as well as French President Emmanuel Macron, Kern said the four had agreed on broad principles. Macron said those included shortening the time workers can be posted abroad and the issue of fair pay.

European rules on posted workers enable companies to send workers from low-pay countries to wealthier ones without paying taxes and social charges in the host country, which France and Austria say creates unfair competition.

Reporting by Francois Murphy; editing by Andrew Roche

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