29. 04. 2009 - Czech Airlines reaches agreement with employees to reduce salary costs in reaction to the crisis in the sector

Prague 29 April 2009

Czech Airlines has reached an agreement with seven of nine unions to reduce salaries to last year’s levels. This is in reaction to the global economic recession, one consequence of which has been a fall in airline passenger numbers. Czech Airlines has initiated redundancies in those professions represented by the Trade Union of Aviation Mechanics, where agreement was not reached, that will bring about the necessary five percent reduction in salary costs. Negotiations with the pilots’ union have not yet been finalised. 

Czech Airlines management commenced negotiations with the unions on reducing salary costs because of the global economic situation and the rapid fall in demand for air transport at the beginning of last December. “From the start of the negotiations we pushed for salary reductions rather than redundancies,” said Vice-president for Human Resources Dušan Ryban. The five-month negotiations have so far resulted in agreements with seven of the nine unions. “The company management very much appreciates this clearly difficult decision by the majority of employees and greatly values this step, which will contribute to lessening the affect of the crisis on our company,” stated President of Czech Airlines Radomír Lašák.

The schedule to the Collective Agreement, which stipulates a return to the salaries of 2008 from 1 April, was signed in April by the following unions:

  • OSZL (Trade Union of Aviation Employees No. 1,3,5,6,7,8,9,12,14)
  • OSD (base organisation of Transport Union No.: 33-0070-3106)
  • 2. ZO OSLZ (2nd base organisation of the Trade Union of Aviation Employees)
  • OOPL  (Trade Union of Aviation Crews)
  • CZALDA (Trade Union of Aviation Dispatchers)
  • CAAE (Trade Union of Aviation Technicians and Engineers)

Negotiations with the pilots’ union (CZALPA) continue. 

The return to the salary levels of 2008 will thus apply to the majority of company employees, and will save Czech Airlines an estimated 250 million Czech crowns in salary costs this year.

In the schedule to the Collective Agreement the CZLCA union (Load control) waived its profit sharing entitlement and these employees did not receive a salary rise in 2009.

The Trade Union of Aviation Mechanics (OOLM), which represents approximately 500 employees in the Czech Airlines Technical Section, rejected the company management’s proposal for salary reductions. This decision was reached by the general meeting of the union by a vote of the member base. Czech Airlines will therefore be cancelling 28 jobs in the Technical Section, which will achieve the planned five percent reduction in salary costs in this professional group as well. The operation of the company and the Technical Section will not be affected by these redundancies.

The members of the Czech Airlines Board of Directors and the Supervisory Board have reduced their own salaries by 15 percent and approximately one hundred managers had their salaries frozen in December 2008.

 

Daniela Hupáková
Communications Director
Czech Airlines Press Spokesperson