Free Movement of Workers

Free movement of workers: Article 45

The principle of freedom of movement and the non-discrimination on grounds of nationality (Article 18 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union or TFEU) are intertwined. Article 45 TFEU on the Free Movement of Workers represents an application of this connection in the context of workers.

This Article bars any direct or indirect discrimination on grounds of nationality and removes obstacles to access to the employment market for the people falling into the legal category of 'workers'. Article 45 TFEU defines 'worker' as an entire new EU law concept. It is construed rather broadly and includes EU citizens in a relationship of subordination who are pursuing employment activities which are effective and genuine, not small scale ‘purely marginal and ancillary’ activities. If the EU citizen is self-employed, they will rely on Article 49 TFEU.