BUSINESS IN SHORT

Personal data protection to change

PRIME MINISTER Robert Fico has made concessions to employers critical of the personal data protection law. At its March 19 session the government passed the amendment to the law, valid for only one year, which was criticised for, among other things, high fines and bureacracy. The amendment is to be discussed in a fast-tracked proceeding.

PRIME MINISTER Robert Fico has made concessions to employers critical of the personal data protection law. At its March 19 session the government passed the amendment to the law, valid for only one year, which was criticised for, among other things, high fines and bureacracy. The amendment is to be discussed in a fast-tracked proceeding.

Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) MP Jozef Mihál, however, considers the move to be part of the presidential campaign, the Sme daily wrote.

If cleared by parliament, the Office for Personal Data Protection will no longer be obliged to impose fines for all violations, but will be free to decide whether or not to fine a subject. Moreover, the fines will decrease.

“It is a response to the signals received by the prime minister [claiming that] the bureaucratic burden was extreme,” said Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák, as reported by the SITA newswire.

The employers’ associations, the National Union of Employers (RÚZ) and the Federation of Employers’ Associations (AZZZ), have recently called the law bureaucratic nonsense. According to them, it is not possible to implement it in practice, SITA wrote.

The law also burdens businesses and increases their costs, and pointlessly exceeds the requirements of the European legislation. The employers also described some of the terms as vague and absurd, the TASR newswire wrote.

The aim of the amendment, according to the government, is to minimise the vagueness and to simplify certain requirements. Companies will not be required to employ someone entitled to work with personal data, but will be able to offer him or her a limited employment agreement. The amendment will also abolish the requirement for employees or suppliers to snitch on firms, Sme wrote.

“It is [part of the] presidential campaign,” said Mihál, as quoted by Sme. Fico, running in the run-off set for March 29, is trying to get the support of businesses in the final leg, he opined.

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