Verheugen: 7-year transition period, review after two years

06-04-2001

The EU commissioner for enlargement, Gunter Verheugen, says he will propose a seven-year transition period for the free movement of labour after EU expansion, with a review after two years. The idea of a transition period on this sensitive issue has created tensions between the EU member states and the candidate countries, and Mr. Verheugen, currently on a visit to Prague, has urged both sides to be flexible. Mr. Verheugen said that the best way to make the process flexible would be to review the situation after two years. The commissioner says he hopes the chapter of EU legislation on the free movement of labour can be completed by the end of this year.