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Labour law breakthrough for the wind energy industry

The Ministry of Labour has officially announced that “Personnel Working for the Construction, Operation and Maintenance of Offshore Wind Farms or Onshore Wind Farms” (離岸風場及陸域風場之興建或運作維護從業人員) will no longer be subject to the same strict working conditions as regular employees. According to the announcement, a new category of employees working for the wind energy industry has been added to Article 84-1 of the Labour Standards Act, making these employees eligible for partial exemptions to the act. In practice, this means that workers may arrange their own working hours, regular days off, national holidays through other agreements with their employers, although these agreements must be submitted for review and approval to the municipal authorities where companies are registered.

This represents a significant breakthrough for ECCT members in the wind energy industry who have previously faced difficulties complying with strict working hour requirements when they need great flexibility to build wind farms in unpredictable and ever-changing weather and for various other reasons. The breakthrough has been achieved thanks to several years of advocacy by the ECCT’s Wind Energy and Human Resources committees and the flexible approach adopted by the government.