Lufthansa ground staff agree on pay deal after strike

  • Lufthansa and Verdi union reach 18-month wage agreement
  • Deal favors low-income workers
  • Deal averts further ground staff walkouts

FRANKFURT, Aug 5 (Reuters) – German airline Lufthansa‘s (LHAG.DE) ground staff and management have reached a pay deal after a third round of talks, averting further walkouts during the busy travel season. summer, the Verdi union and the carrier belatedly announced. Thursday.

Airlines across Europe are facing labor disputes this summer as a rapid recovery in tourism has led to staff shortages and soaring inflation has prompted workers to demand higher wages.

The pay dispute at Lufthansa led to a strike last week which led to the cancellation of more than 1,000 flights.

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The carrier is still facing uncertainty about possible walkouts by its workers. The carrier is due to meet next week with the pilots, who have already voted in favor of strikes.

After two years in which the global COVID-19 pandemic dampened wage increases in the aviation sector and inflation now hovering around 8%, the agreement announced on Wednesday evening will result in wage increases in real terms, Verdi said.

It includes a salary increase of 200 euros per month from 1 July this year, plus an increase of 2.5% or at least 125 euros per month from 1 January next year and 2 .5% additional from July 1, 2023.

This will mean bigger increases for low-income staff and smaller ones for workers in higher income brackets. For example, for staff working at airport check-in counters, this will mean total increases of between 13.6% and 18.4%, depending on how long they have been with the company, Verdi said.

Lufthansa added that the agreement would mean an increase in gross basic wages of 8.3% for workers earning 6,500 euros a month and 19.2% for those earning 2,000 euros.

Also, for low-income workers, the hourly wage will be set at 13 euros from October 1, above the legal minimum of 12 euros. The union initially demanded a 9.5% pay rise for ground staff.

“This result, which makes Lufthansa more attractive as an employer, will bring relief,” said Verdi negotiator Christine Behle.

The pay deal will run for 18 months, the parties said.

Earlier on Thursday, Lufthansa said it expected demand for short-haul flights in Europe to drive growth for its passenger airlines this year, forecasting a return to group operating profit for the whole year. Read more

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Reporting by Ilona Wissenbach; Written by Tom Sims and Maria Sheahan; Editing by Daniel Wallis and David Evans

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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