Austrian Airlines cost-cutting programme hits setback over labour rules

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By TESTCustomwebLP TESTCustomwebLP September 12, 2014 19:21

Austrian Airlines cost-cutting programme hits setback over labour rules

Austrian Airlines’s cost-cutting programme has come under fire from the European Court of Justice (ECJ), which ruled on Thursday that collective wage agreements still apply to labour contracts that have been subject to a transfer of operations.
The ruling addressed a dispute over whether Austrian could unilaterally cancel a previous labour agreement when it transferred its flight operations  to its LCC subsidiary Tyrolean Airways in 2012.

In a statement, Austrian said: “The ECJ holds the opinion that the term ‘working conditions stipulated in a collective wage agreement’ contained in the EU Transfers of Undertakings Directive also apply to the working conditions of a collective wage agreement terminated during the transfer of operations.”

The transfer of up to 2,000 flight and cabin crew to Tyrolean was a key element of restructuring that the loss-making Austrian Airlines embarked on after it was purchased from the Austrian government by Lufthansa in 2009. Tyrolean staff now work according to their previous pay deals, while the more generous Austrian Airlines pay has been frozen.

The airline’s union wants to preserve the old Austrian Airlines collective wage agreement, while the company  wants to negotiate on the basis of the less-generous Tyrolean contracts.

The transfer of operations to Tyrolean is also being assessed in another case at a Vienna court.

“Austrian Airlines expects the court proceedings to be resumed due to the decision made by the ECJ, and maintains its legal standpoint that the transfer of flight operations to Tyrolean was lawful,” the airline said.

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By TESTCustomwebLP TESTCustomwebLP September 12, 2014 19:21