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Finnair avoids strikes – traffic returns to normal within a few days

Finnair’s employer association PALTA (the Association of Support Service Industries) and SLSY (The Finnish Flight Attendants' Association ) and IAU (The Finnish Aviation Union) have concluded a new collective labour agreement and also agreed on the schedule and process of separate, company-specific negotiations related to Finnair’s cost savings. The foreseen strikes are therefore cancelled and Finnair’s traffic will return to normal within a few days.

The negotiation parties reached an agreement in line with the Finnish Employment and Growth Pact. Finnair and SLSY will negotiate on reaching the savings necessary for Finnair during the period from November 25, 2013 to April 28, 2014.If savings targets are met, cabin personnel will be protected from layoffs for two years.

Finnair and IAU have already made much progress in reaching accompany-specific labour agreement for technical staff, and they will continue these negotiations. In addition Finnair and IAU continue company-specific negotiations on labour agreements for ground handling personnel.

"Avoiding the strikes in the final stages of negotiations is excellent news for our customers, although it is very unfortunate that the strike threats and the flight cancellations caused by the threats have caused uncertainty and harm to our passengers," says Finnair’s CEO Pekka Vauramo. "It is good that we at Finnair, together with labour unions, are now proceeding with negotiations on the cost savings that are so important for our airline’s future. In our industry, employment and growth require clear improvements in productivity and I want to thank SLSY and IAU for committing to this target."

“Our cost savings and productivity targets for personnel are unchanged, but we can reach them through multiple means that are acceptable to all," Vauramo underlines. "Finnair deserves a chance to grow and survive in the tight international competition, and reaching an agreement on the savings negotiation process was a critical step forward. We now need to advance rapidly with this work if we are to continue offering good flight connections from Finland for Finns and for Finnish business, and to continue offering our European and Asian customers a high-quality product and competitive long-haul flights.”

Finnair targets permanent total savings of 200 million euros compared to its 2010 cost level. The sum includes the additional cost savings program of the 60 million euros announced in October 2012, which consists mainly of staff related costs. Finnair’s target is to reach the savings by the end of 2014.

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