In its regular package of infringement decisions, the European Commission takes legal action against Member States that have failed to comply with their obligations under EU law. These decisions, which cover various sectors and policy areas of the European Union, are designed to ensure that EU law is correctly applied for the benefit of citizens and businesses.
The main decisions adopted by the Commission concerning Spain are presented below, grouped by policy area.
The Commission will also close 135 cases that have been settled by the Member States concerned without the Commission having to pursue the procedure further.
Work-Life balance: Commission calls on 11 countries to fully transpose EU rules on work-life balance for parents and carers.
The European Commission decided to send a reasoned opinion to Belgium (INFR(2022)0332), Czechia (INFR(2022)0346), Ireland (INFR(2022)0370), Greece (INFR(2022)0353), Spain (INFR(2022)0355), France (INFR(2022)0360), Croatia (INFR(2022)0362), Cyprus (INFR(2022)0341), Luxembourg (INFR(2022)0374), Austria (INFR(2022)0328) and Slovenia (INFR(2022)0393) for failing to notify national measures fully transposing EU rights on Work-Life Balance for parents and carers (Directive (EU) 2019/1158).
The Directive aims to foster equal participation of men and women in labour market, by encouraging equal sharing of care responsibilities between parents. It ensures that fathers have the right to take at least ten working days of paternity leave around the time of birth of the child. The Directive also establishes a minimum of four months of parental leave, with at least two out of the four months paid and non-transferable from one parent to another. It establishes five working days per year of carers’ leave for workers providing personal care or support to a relative or person living in the same household. In addition, it gives all carers and working parents of children up to eight years old the right to request flexible working arrangements. The transposition deadline for the Directive was 2 August 2022. On 21 September 2022, the Commission sent letters of formal notice to 19 Member States for failing to communicate measures to transpose this Directive. After having analysed their replies, the Commission found that the Directive is still not fully transposed in 11 Member States, and therefore decided to take a further step in the infringement procedures by sending a reasoned opinion to Belgium, Czechia, Ireland, Greece, Spain, France, Croatia, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Austria and Slovenia. Member States now have two months to take the necessary measures to comply with the reasoned opinion. Otherwise, the Commission may decide to refer them to the Court of Justice of the European Union. The full press release is available online.
Taxation and Customs Union
Taxation: Commission calls on SPAIN to transpose new EU excise duty rules relating to small and artisan alcohol producers
The European Commission decided to send a reasoned opinion to Spain (INFR(2022)0075) for failing to notify transposition measures of new EU rules on the harmonisation of the structures of excise duties on alcohol and alcoholic beverages (Directive 2020/1151). The Directive sets up an EU-wide certification system for small and artisan alcohol producers which facilitates their access to low excise duty rates across the Union. Member States were required to transpose this Directive by 31 December 2021. In January 2022, the Commission sent letters of formal notice to 11 Member States, including Spain, after they failed to fully transpose the Directive. To date, Spain has not notified any transposition measures to the Commission. Spain now has two months to comply with the transposition obligation and notify the Commission. Otherwise, the Commission may decide to refer the case to the Court of Justice of the European Union.
Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union
Commission urges SPAIN to transpose the Sustainability Factors Directive into national law
The European Commission decided to send a reasoned opinion to Spain (INFR(2022)0356) for failing to notify measures for the transposition into national law of the Sustainability Factors Directive (Directive (EU) 2021/1269). Spain has failed to transpose the Directive by the deadline of 21 August 2022. The Directive is part of the ‘Financing Sustainable Growth’ Action Plan by the Commission. One of the plan’s objectives is to reorient capital flows towards sustainable investments to achieve sustainable and inclusive growth. The Directive clarifies the need for sustainability factors and sustainability related objectives to be taken into account in the product governance and oversight process of investment firms manufacturing financial instruments and their distributors. Spain has now two months to reply and take the necessary measures. Otherwise, the Commission may decide to refer the case to the Court of Justice of the European Union.