Tuesday, June 27, 2006

European Year of Workers' Mobility

The EU is not happy with the disappointingly small amount of people (currently only 1.5 %) who move from one European country to another to work. Free movement of people, goods, and capital are the founding stones of European integration, and while a lot has been done, not much seems to be happening. Thus, the current year has been nominated as a theme year for workers' mobility.

No wonder people are not moving. The policies focus on issues such as transferability of qualifications, waiving work permits, taxation, access to health care etc., which are of course very important as such, but ignore other, vital things such as the problems you face when trying to let an apartment in a foreign country, for instance.

Today I was told by an a*****e (no, its not amicable, doesn't fit) property agent that my grant does not qualify as income in Britain because the grant is "European", and, worst of all, it is in euros. I tried to explain that it is currently in pounds, as it sits in my British bank account, but to no avail. So, I will need a guarantor for the rent, as I'm not earning or in possession of real money. Needless to say that my family, relatives, and most friends are all excluded because they don't live in the UK. Only 16th generation independent inherited thoroughbred old money, Pounds Sterling for us, please.

Free movement of people & capital my butt. I wonder what my MP and MEP have to say about this.

(Pic europa.eu)

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