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How to tackle efficiently undeclared work? Prevention versus punishment

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As from 2007, undeclared work in Europe is commonly defined as any paid activities that are lawful as regards their nature but not declared to public authorities. The phenomenon mostly affects sectors such as construction, car repairs, domestic or industrial cleaning services, care and personal services, agriculture and catering industry. It causes serious damages to working conditions, quality of services, fair competition, innovation and public revenues. In Europe, an estimated €2.1 trillion of income is lost due to undeclared work annually.


Based on these facts, the 2012 European Employment Package emphasized the important job creation potential relying on the transformation of undeclared work into formal jobs. In 2014, the European Commission also proposed the creation of a European Platform to improve cooperation at EU level to prevent and deter undeclared work.


In that perspective, various approaches can be adopted by public authorities, with the support of multiple stakeholders (notably workers, employers, labour inspectors), to tackle undeclared work: from deterrence (by improving detection, inspection or punishing non-compliance and introducing penalties) to prevention (promoting compliance, enabling the legitimization) and curative measures (whitening undeclared work and bringing it in the formal market). Due to the complexity and the significance of the problem, interventions may combine these different methods to efficiently deal with it.


This tenth Policies and Practices’ session will focus on:


-          The effects of existing measures to tackle undeclared work


-          The introduction of the formalization of the black economy on the debate


-          The possibilities at EU level to act in this field 


Speakers addressing these issues include: 





Professional Career and Political Responsibilities

1972 – 1974 – Researcher at the International Relations and Socialist                                   Integration Institute – Sofia

1974 – 1976 – Expert at the Ministry of Foreign Trade

1976 – 1980 – Councilor at the Council of Ministers 

1980 – 1989 – Vice Minister of Foreign Trade

1989 – 1990 – Vice-Chairman of the Council of Ministers

1990 – 2013 – Member of Parliament in the VII-th Grand National                                       Assembly and in the 36-th to 41-st National Assemblies;

                  - President of the 40-th National Assembly

                  - Member of the Parliamentary Committees on Budget and                               Finance, on European Integration and on Foreign Policy and                           Defense 

                  - Member of the Parliamentary Delegations to the Parliamentary                       Assemblies of the Council of Europe (PACE), the OSCE, the WEU                     and NATO;

                  - Member of the Parliamentary Friendship Groups with Austria,                         Vietnam, Russia, Slovakia, USA, France, the Czech Republic;

                  - Representative of the 41-st National Assembly for the                                   Institutionalization of the  Parliamentary Dimension of the                             Process of Cooperation in South Eastern Europe (SEECP)

1995 – 1996  –  Minister of Foreign Affairs, 

                      Chairman of the first Conference of Ministers of Foreign Affairs                       from  South Eastern Europe in Sofia, July 1996

1990 – 2013  -   Member of the Leaderships of the Bulgarian Socialist                                    Party and of the Parliamentary Group of the Coalition for                              Bulgaria

                   - Chairman of the BSP Program Commission (2005 – 2009)

2014 -          - Member of the European Parliament;

                     Member of the Committees on Employment and Social Affairs                        and on Budget Control; Alternate Member of the Committee                            on Transport and Tourism



1962 – 1966 – English Language High-school, Sofia

1967 – 1972 – MA in International Economic Relations, University of                                     National and World Economy, Sofia


Personal data

Date and place of birth: Sept. 10, 1948; New York

Married;  two children, adults

Languages: English, Russian, French



Muriel Guin, Head of Unit, DG EMPL, European Commission



Kerstin Howald, Secretary for the Tourism Sector with the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions (EFFAT)





Friday 5 July, 2024



Virtual Event - Zoom


Policies & Practices