An extension of a week has been granted to resolve the on-going disputes between pilots and management at Air Malta, with the jobs of over 100 pilots hanging in the balance.
Disputes between management and pilots began after pilots whose work have stopped as a result of the COVID-19 crisis refused to accept a pay reduction to around €1,200 a month as per the government’s wage supplement scheme, insisting that the airline’s management accepts similar pay cuts.
108 pilots were given a 30 day notice that they will be made redundant in the case no agreement was found within the company.
Yesterday, a day ahead of the expiry of the notice, pilot association ALPA accused Air Malta of changing its redundancy terms, informing them that they require 62 pilots rather than 26, four to five aircrafts as opposed to one or two and 125 cabin crew up from 49 as originally envisioned in their post- COVID-19 strategy.
The request for an extension was rejected by the national airline but accepted by the Department of Industrial Relations.
Economy Minister Silvio Schembri said this afternoon that talks between Air Malta and pilots have progressed significantly and are now at a “very delicate” stage but declined to comment further, arguing that he doesn’t want his statements to harm the discussions in any way.