Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Prof. Dr. Matthias Ruffert

A European Minimum Wage?

Within the framework of the "European Pillar of Social Rights", the European Union has set itself the goal of ensuring a fair wage level for workers in the Union. This framework aims to ensure an adequate standard of living for all. In many member states, the gap between the low-wage sector and high earners has widened in recent decades. Inequality in earnings and the number of employed people living in poverty increased.
The Commission sees an appropriate minimum wage as a crucial step toward remedying this problem. However, the economic and social conditions in the member states vary considerably. Correspondingly, it will be a challenge to create a European legal act that all can agree on - while still having an effect. 

During this year's MEUC Council simulation, it will be the students' task to determine: What is an "appropriate minimum wage"? How far does the EU's competence extend to enact such a measure in the first place? Does it have to be a Directive, or will a Recommendation suffice? 
The participants will discuss these and many other questions - in the role of representatives of the member states or of an EU body - and try to develop a consensual version of the law.
In doing so, the participants will not only discuss the legal problems and gain a deeper insight into the structure and law-making of the European Institutions. At the same time, they will also improve their rhetorical and argumentative skills and their fluency in English. 


The MEUC successfully took place via Zoom on 21. & 22. January 2022. Over 50 participants debated the necessity and intricacies of the directive on adequate minimum wages. After two heated days of discussion, the directive was not adopted by the council.

The final result can be found here

An article for the press can be found here.