Banner Viadrina

EFP in Europe

“Implementation of the Pilot Project – Promotion of Employee Ownership and Participation“ / Service contract, client: European Commission, DG MARKT (Sep. 2013 – Oct. 2014)


This study provides an overview of the development of employee financial participation (EFP), in particular employee share owner-ship, across the EU-28. Considering the policy development over the past 30 years, it highlights the growth of EFP over last decade, based on the 2013 European Company Survey data which also showed the potential positive impact of EFP on employment and productivity. The study analyses a range of policy options and makes recommendations to the Commission in the form of a five-point plan. Most importantly, it proposes the establishment of a Virtual Cen-tre for employee financial participation, including an effective tax rate calculator in the short term; the development of a code of conduct, in the mid-term, and an optional “Common European Regime on EFP” in the long term. Overcoming the barriers especially to cross-border plans is particularly important in view of the potential described in this study for EU companies to implement such schemes and benefit from their impact.


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Video message by Commissioner Michel Barnier



Employee Financial Participation in Companies´ Proceeds (FWC No. IP/A/ECON/FWC/2010-109 (Lot 5)) (Study 180 p.) / Funding: European Parliament (Jan. 2012 – Sep. 2013)

This study provides an overview of the development of employee financial participation (EFP) across the EU-27 and shows its positive dynamic between 2000 and 2009, despite the recent financial crisis.
A comparison of the rules and regulations on general taxation, social security contributions and specific tax incentives for EFP schemes across the EU indicates that fiscal incentives, while not a prerequisite to EFP do promote the spread of these schemes. To provide transparency concerning fiscal treatment of EFP schemes, effective tax rates on different schemes are presented. Eight cases were selected and analysed to identify both the best practice and the obstacles to promoting best practice. This study concludes with a proposal for an alternative approach to a European framework: the “28th regime on Employee Financial Participation”.


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Presentation of the study in the EP



Employee Financial Participation in Public Services in the European Union / Funding: CEEP and European Commission (Mar. 2011 – Feb. 2012)
This is the first study of the extent of Employee Financial Participation (EFP) schemes in enterprises providing Services of General Interest (SGIs) in the European Union. The study provides a systematic overview of the forms of EFP practised in the EU. It utilises the information on some 8,000 SGI enterprises from the European Company Survey (2009) to analyse the existence (or lack) of EFP schemes in different branches of public services. This broad statistical picture is supplemented by case studies of fifteen public service enterprises in various countries of the European Union. The data shows, that the extent of EFP varies widely in different branches of public services with a much higher level in utilities and a much lower level in public administration.


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Information and Communication Project – Promoting EFP in the EU-27 / Funding: European Commission (Dec. 2010 – Nov. 2011)

This project, implemented by a consortium of 26 organisations aimed at providing support for the inclusion of Employee Financial Participation (EFP) in the EU policy agenda. It created a large partnership to identify best practices to improve policy making and policy implementation while at the same time monitoring and reporting on the progresses of Member States in promoting EFP. The project consisted of nine national workshops organised by project partners in their country to disseminate results providing policy makers with concrete instruments to promote EFP and a three-day event entitled ”A Week of Employee Financial Participation” in Brussels. 20 Viadrina students co-organised the conference and took part in the event, five of them as speakers. To document the conference they set-up a blog, produced an image film and a conference trailer.


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Book presentation in Brussels, President of the EP Jerzy Buzek