HC Deb 02 June 1992 vol 208 cc475-6W
Mrs. Lait

To ask the Secretary of State for Employment whether firms in the City of London, such as stockbrokers and merchant bankers, whose staff work more than a 48-hour basic week would need to seek derogation under the terms of the draft directive on working hours as it currently stands.

Mr. Michael Forsyth

In its current form the draft directive on working time would apply to all employees except for those in transport and sea fishing. Derogations would be permitted in certain circumstances, including cases where the duration of working time can be determined by the employees themselves, such as managing executives or other people with autonomous decision taking powers. These maybe of relevance to the financial services sector. Notwithstanding possible derogations, the Government see no justification for general and compulsory limits on the working week and are continuing, through constructive discussions with our Community partners, to seek to protect employers and employees in the United Kingdom against arbitrary and unnecessary restrictions.