Overview

Labour market policy

Basic income support for jobseekers

Skilled workers

Transformation of the world of work

Labour Law

Occupational Safety and Health

Overview

Social Insurance

Statutory accident insurance

Old-age security in Germany

Social Assistance

Socialcompensation law

Health Care

Participation and inclusion

Overview

Europe

Overview

#MySocialEurope: Germany's Presidency of the Council of the European Union

Employment and social policy in the EU

Working in another EU country

EU external relations

Migration from third countries

European Funds

Overview

European Social Fund (ESF)

Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD)

International

Overview

International Employment and Social Policy

Labour and Social Policy at the G7/G20 Levels

Corporate Social Responsibility

Twinning in Labour and Social Policy (Administrative partnerships)

Bilateral social security agreements outside the European Union

International Organisations

Overview:  Services

Contact

Publications

Overview

Shopping cart

Press

Overview

Recent Publications

Press photos

Overview

Press photos of the minister

Press photos of the state secretaries

RSS

Visitor Centre

Overview:  The Ministry

BMAS at a Glance

Political Staff

Labour

Overview

Labour market policy

Basic income support for jobseekers

Skilled workers

Transformation of the world of work

Labour Law

Occupational Safety and Health

Social Affairs

Overview

Social Insurance

Statutory accident insurance

Old-age security in Germany

Social Assistance

Socialcompensation law

Health Care

Participation and inclusion

Europe and the World

Overview

Europe

Overview

#MySocialEurope: Germany's Presidency of the Council of the European Union

Employment and social policy in the EU

Working in another EU country

EU external relations

Migration from third countries

European Funds

Overview

European Social Fund (ESF)

Fund for European Aid to the Most Deprived (FEAD)

International

Overview

International Employment and Social Policy

Labour and Social Policy at the G7/G20 Levels

Corporate Social Responsibility

Twinning in Labour and Social Policy (Administrative partnerships)

Bilateral social security agreements outside the European Union

International Organisations

Services

Overview:  Services

Contact

Publications

Overview

Shopping cart

Press

Overview

Recent Publications

Press photos

Overview

Press photos of the minister

Press photos of the state secretaries

RSS

Visitor Centre

The Ministry

Overview:  The Ministry

BMAS at a Glance

Political Staff

Europe

EU enlargement

Accession to the European Union is a central political goal for many countries because of the numerous benefits it has for citizens and the economic strength of the Union. EU enlargement is also a key component in the development of the European Union.

There are further countries wanting to become members of the EU

There were six founding members - Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands. Twenty-two more countries then joined the EU in a total of five rounds of enlargement between 1973 and 2013. After the United Kingdom's withdrawal on 31 January 2020, the European Union now has 27 member states.

Seven other countries currently have prospects of joining the EU: Turkey and the six Western Balkan countries of Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Kosovo. The EU is currently holding accession negotiations with three of these candidates: Turkey, Montenegro and Serbia. The EU member states have decided to start negotiations with Albania and the Republic of North Macedonia soon. The candidate countries must systematically reform their legal systems step by step to come in line with the acquis and code of values of the European Union on the basis of 35 negotiation chapters.

Two of these chapters, Chapter 2 (freedom of movement for workers ) and Chapter 19 (social policy and employment) require a comparison with European social and labour law. The Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs is primarily responsible for this policy field for the German side. We thus follow the Commission's negotiations on these two chapters, closely observing and monitoring the reforms that these enlargement countries undertake in implementing the full acquis communitaire in the field of labour and social affairs.

Chapter 2 regulates the free movement of workers. Every candidate for accession to the EU must make it legally possible for all EU citizens to work within its territory. Furthermore, migrant EU workers must be treated the same as national workers in terms of working conditions, social benefits and tax advantages. Insured persons and their family members are entitled to statutory social benefits when moving within the EU.
In the field of social policy, chapter 19 brings the legal systems of the candidates for accession to the EU gradually in line with EU law and the required administrative capacity. This harmonisation of laws covers the EU’s standards in the fields of labour law, occupational health and safety, social dialogue, employment policy, social security, social inclusion, equality and anti-discrimination at work and the European Social Fund (ESF).

Turkey Secretariat

German-Turkish relations are particularly important because more than three million people of Turkish descent live in Germany. More than half of them have German citizenship, too. These deep interpersonal connections mean there is great mobility between the two countries.

Turkey's interest in enhanced cooperation is also a result of the necessity to implement and apply the EU acquis communautaire. Both sides want to eliminate the comparatively high unemployment rates among persons of Turkish origin and increase the participation rate of young people in vocational training programmes, which remains low. A better and more targeted approach to dual training and higher education is needed already at school.

The recognition of Turkish diplomas and certificates in Germany is also important. This is especially important for Turkish nationals moving to Germany for family reunification.

Last but not least, it is important to ensure the practical implementation of the German-Turkish social security agreement. Both Ministries of Labour and Social Affairs cooperate, among other things, in the framework of a German-Turkish interministerial working group. The integration of people with Turkish roots into the German labour market is high on the agenda of the meetings.

Europe