Lufthansa, Pilot Union Agree Pay Deal

March 15, 2017

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Lufthansa and the VC union have agreed non-binding terms on payments, pensions and employment conditions for pilots at Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cargo and Germanwings.

The deal should bring to an end the long-running fight over a new collective bargaining agreement due since 2012. The lack of agreement has resulted in over a dozen pilot strikes.

Lufthansa said the declaration creates a sustainable deal that will last until 2022 and lays the foundation for a new social partnership with the union.

“With this declaration of intent we have finally reached a breakthrough. The path is now clear for a comprehensive settlement with Vereinigung Cockpit on all unresolved collective bargaining issues,” Lufthansa head of HR Bettina Volkens said.

“The declaration of intent for a total solution represents a great opportunity to settle the tariff conflict that has been going on for years”, VC Management Board member Jörg Handwerg said.

The deal includes pay increases of 11.4 percent in total for the period from May 2012 until June 2022, and a one-time payment equivalent to 1.8 times monthly salary.

The pilots’ pension schemes will move to defined contributions from the current defined benefit basis, and the retirement age for transitional benefits will increase to an average of 60 years.

Lufthansa Group has agreed to staff at least 325 aircraft with pilots on the new conditions, create at least 600 positions for captains, and employ more than 700 new pilots.

The airline will not pursue plans to staff 40 newly acquired aircraft outside the group-wide collective bargaining agreement.

Lufthansa said the recommendations made last month by the appointed mediator Gunter Pleuger formed one part of the considerations, but the agreement has made formal acceptance of the arbitration recommendations unnecessary.