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At EU level, this matter is stipulated by Council Directive 2001/23/EC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to the safeguarding of employees' rights in the event of transfers of undertakings, businesses or parts of undertakings or businesses.

1. Scope

The Directive applies to any transfer of an undertaking, business, or part of an undertaking or business, to another employer, as a result of a legal transfer or merger.

The Directive covers public and private undertakings engaged in economic activities, whether operating for gain or not, with the exception of seagoing vessels.

However, the Directive does not apply to the transfer of administrative functions between public administrative authorities, or in case of an administrative reorganization of public administrative authorities.

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