The Czech Republic will do its best to try to get Germany and Austria to open up their labour markets to Czech citizens, Czech Labour and Social Affairs Minister Petr Nečas said at a debate on cross-border work-mobility on Saturday. The minister said that the Czech Republic’s motto for its European presidency in the first half of 2009 was “Europe Without Barriers” and that the country intended to try and secure that for all member states. France, Belgium and Denmark have indicated that their will open their labour markets to Czech citizens before the end of the year, which would leave only Austria and Germany holding out. Germany has said it intends to protect its labour market until 2011. Mr. Nečas said it would create a strange situation for Germany to withhold this right to the citizens of a country presiding the EU.