Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure DE-2020-36/1139 – Updated – measures in Germany
|Country||Germany , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Temporary, 03 September 2020 – 30 November 2020|
|Type||Bipartite collective agreements|
Ensuring business continuity and support for essential services
– Remuneration and rewards for workers in essential services
|Author||Birgit Kraemer (Hans Boeckler Foundation) and Eurofound|
|Measure added||15 September 2020 (updated 27 May 2021)|
Compared to other sectors, the construction sector was less affected by COVID-19. The sector also profits from the public recovery programme and public investments in infrastructure and building retrofits. In the 2020 collective bargaining round, the construction workers union IG BAU raised demands for a wage increase, for a reimbursement of transport costs to and from a construction site and, additionally, for a COVID-19 premium. The negotiations with the employer organisation failed and the collective bargaining partners had to involve an arbitrator who decided in favour of several union demands. The social partners accepted the arbitrator's decision on 17 September 2020.
On 3 September 2020, the arbitrator decided in favour of travel-to-and-from work reimbursements, wage increases, and a one-time COVID-19 premium. The COVID-19 premia are €500 for workers and €250 for apprentices. No taxes or social security contribution apply to the premia, meaning the workers receive the full amount with no deductions. The wage increase includes a recognition of workers' travel expenses for the journey to and from work. This wage increase alone is equivalent to 0.5% increase of one hourly wage. The total wage increases, from January 2020, vary according to different regions and lie at around 2%.
The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.
|19 May 2021||
The measure ended on 30 November 2020.
No data at this point.
Employees in standard employment
Sector specific set of companies
||Does not apply to citizens|
Social partners jointly
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Role||Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative||Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative|
|Form||Not applicable||Not applicable|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
(1) The 2020 collective bargaining round took place, but failed. (2) All social partners accepted an arbitrator decision on 17 September 2020. (3) Employers cover the cost of the premia and wage increases.
The social partners had to involve an arbitrator who decided in favour of several union demands. All social partners agreed to the arbitrator decision.
This case is sector-specific (only private sector)
|Economic area||Sector (NACE level 2)|
|F - Construction||F41 Construction of buildings|
This case is not occupation-specific.
Eurofound (2020), One-time premium for construction workers, measure DE-2020-36/1139 (measures in Germany), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/DE-2020-36_1139.html
30 January 2023
Governments across the EU continue to implement policies to support citizens and businesses in the face of rising food and energy prices caused by the COVID-19 crisis and intensified by the war in Ukraine. This article summarises the policy responses as reported in Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch database from January to September 2022.Article
12 September 2022
Although the worldwide pandemic situation had already disrupted supply chains and triggered increases in energy and food prices in 2021, the situation deteriorated in 2022 with the Russian invasion of Ukraine.Article
12 September 2022
This article summarises the first policy responses that governments across the EU have started to implement to support companies affected by the rising prices, and those with commercial ties to Ukraine, Russia or Belarus.Article
5 July 2022
This article summarises the first policy responses of EU Member States, including those of the social partners and other civil society actors, enabling refugees to exercise their rights under the Temporary Protection Directive.Article
Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.