Icelandair Might Consider Talks with New Union

Vala Hafstað

The establishment of a new union of flight attendants in Iceland has been discussed, according to Morgunblaðið’s sources. 

Such a union, if established, would not share the goals of the negotiating committee of the Icelandic Cabin Crew Association, currently involved in wage negotiations with Icelandair. Rather than hiring independent contractors to replace its flight attendants, the airline would prefer to negotiate with a new union should it fail to reach an agreement with the Icelandic Cabin Crew Association.

A meeting between Icelandair and the Cabin Crew Association began at 8:30 this morning at the office of the state mediator. Their last meeting, which ended at 11 pm Monday, lasted 11 hours.

Time is running out for negotiations, for Bogi Nils Bogason, CEO of Icelandair, has stressed the importance of reaching a deal in time for a shareholder meeting, scheduled for Friday. At the meeting, shareholders will vote on whether to go ahead with a public stock offering, where the aim is to raise ISK 30 billion (USD 209 million; EUR 191 million) in equity.

Icelandair has emphasized that a wage agreement with flight attendants has to be reached that makes the airline more competitive internationally.

In a written response to a question from Morgunblaðið earlier this week, the airline was not ready to comment on how it would react if it fails to reach an agreement with flight attendants in time for the shareholder meeting.

The airline has already signed a five-year wage agreement with air mechanics and another wage agreement with the Icelandic Airline Pilots Association.

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