Lufthansa and its pilots have reached an agreement that secures jobs until the end of March of 2022 and could help reduce costs by as much as €450 million, pilots' union Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) has said.
Like its rivals, Lufthansa is struggling to deal with global travel restrictions and grounded fleets in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
It is surviving on €9 billion of state aid, and chief executive Carsten Spohr said earlier this month that the airline would have to lay off 1,000 pilots in the second quarter if it could not seal a wage agreement with unions.
The agreement includes an extension of shortened working hours in 2021 under the government's Kurzarbeit scheme as well as a reduction in working hours with corresponding salary cuts and the suspension of collective pay increases, Germany's flagship carrier said in a separate statement.
"Lufthansa is ruling out layoffs of pilots for operational reasons at Lufthansa, Lufthansa Cargo, Lufthansa Aviation Training and a subgroup of Germanwings pilots until March 2022," the airline said.
Markus Wahl, president of the VC union, which represents Lufthansa's approximately 5,000 pilots, said, "We are relieved that...we have succeeded in protecting the cockpit staff against compulsory layoffs at least until 31 March 2022."
Option To Extend The Agreement
Lufthansa has an option to extended the agreement until the end of June 2022, according to the union.