Norwegian Air Shuttle said late Tuesday it reached an agreement with its pilots, ending an 11-day strike that has canceled most of the company’s Scandinavian flights and effected tens of thousands of travelers.
“I am very relieved that the strike has been called off and that our passengers finally can feel confident that our flights will operate as normal again. I am terribly sorry for the problems our passengers have experienced as a result of the pilot strike,” said Norwegian’s CEO Bjørn Kjos.
Initially 70 pilots went on strike February 28 after state mediations between the parties broke down, but the conflict escalated to involve almost 700 union members, crippling Norwegian Air Shuttle’s Scandinavian operations.
Norwegian and its pilots, organized by Norwegian Pilots Union, signed new collective agreement that includes:
- A guarantee of employment for three years for all pilots in Scandinavia (i.e. a guarantee against downsizing in the pilot companies)
- Master seniority list for all pilots based in Europe
- No additional salary increase during 2015
- A minimum of 184 days off per year (almost the same as today)
- Marginal changes in working hours and flexibility
- Pension: Contributory pension (innskuddspensjon), including benefit pension scheme, for those who have 15 years or less left until retirement (65 years)
- A Loss of License insurance of 30G; a tax-free payment of approximately 2.65 million NOK
- Joint negotiation for the Norwegian, Swedish and Danish pilots
Mr. Bjørn Kjos added:
“The company has incurred substantial financial costs. It has been an extremely challenging period both for our passengers and our many employees who have been working day and night to take care of customers in the best possible way. I am also very grateful for the patience and support that we have received from the public.”