Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Development of an XML-Edifact bridge

A call for tenders for the development of an XML (extensible markup language)-Edifact bridge has been announced by the Directorate-General for Employment and Social affairs.

In order to ensure that the rights of migrant workers in the European Union are not overlooked, the Member States' social security systems have to exchange information on migrant workers, such as: insurance history records, certificates concerning health care, insurance or posting.

This information is exchanged by means of standardised forms (commonly known as 'E' forms) which have been elaborated and adopted by decision of the Administrative Commission on social security of migrant workers (CASSTM). The information on these so-called E-forms is mainly exchanged on a paper basis.

Three pilot projects are currently being implemented to shift from paper-based information exchanges to electronic exchanges. To date, the commonly agreed rules for the exchange of data have been the use of the Edifact standard for codification of the standardised information on E-forms and X.400 and X.25 public network for the electronic transfer of data. The technical Commission on data processing wishes to enable more Member States to participate in the existing pilot projects without having to invest in Edifact; to demonstrate that cohabitation between old and new technologies is feasible; to provide a migration path to emerging technologies and to reduce implementation time-scales and costs. In order to achieve these aims, the European Commission invites tenders for the design, the development and installation of and XML-Edifact bridge capable of creating E-forms in XML and of sending and receiving E-forms in a format compatible with Edifact.
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