The Green Paper on labour law is now called Green Paper on modernising labour law to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The change of title reflects criticism from employers' associations and member states such as Sweden and the UK, which said that the paper was pre-empting the results of the consultation for which it is the basis, rather than leaving policy options open.
Still, a number of questions have been reworded to eliminate what little agenda-setting had been left:
In Question 1, the part asking "Is the overall framework of labour law, whether at national or EU level, in need of review and adaptation?" has been deleted.
Question 2 no longer asks "how" the adoption of labour law can contribute to achieving objectives such as flexibility, security and less segmentation, but only if it can and "if yes, then how?".
Question 8 no longer asks what the rights that are part of a "floor of rights" applicable to all workers should be, but "What, in your view, would be the impact of such minimum requirements on job creation as well as on the protection of workers?"
To question 11, a second part has been added: "What aspects of the organisation of working time should be tackled as a matter of priority by the Community?"
Question 12 has been reworded to focus mainly on the problems of workers who are cross-frontier mobile.
The paper begins a four-month public consultation, which will end in March 2007. It will be followed by a Commission Communication on flexicurity in June 2007. The Commission hopes to define "a set of common principles" on flexicurity by the end of 2007.