Deutsche Lufthansa AG welcomes the approval by the members of the Unabhängige Flugbegleiter Organisation (UFO), the union of the company’s cabin crew staff, of the terms and conditions of the proposed new collective labor agreements (CLAs) for Lufthansa’s cabin personnel. The approval promises longer-term industrial peace on the CLA front. The various changes under the new CLAs to the remuneration structure and the retirement and transitional provisions for the Lufthansa cabin crew corps will provide the Lufthansa Group with annual savings in the mid-double-digit-million-euro region; and the terms of the new accords will also remove a high triple-digit-million-euro amount from the Lufthansa Group’s occupational pension commitments. The vast majority of this will impact on group results for the current year, where it will have a correspondingly positive effect on the annual EBIT (but not on the adjusted EBIT) result.
In return for these cost concessions, Lufthansa’s cabin personnel will enjoy increases in their remuneration and guaranteed further employment until 2021. They will also be able to use any transitional provisions which they elect not to benefit from to increase their later occupational pension entitlements. Lufthansa’s cabin personnel approved the new CLA package by a sizeable majority, in a referendum whose voting deadline expired at 18:00 tonight.
“It’s vitally important to us at Lufthansa that we can now take this path to the future together with our cabin personnel,” says Dr. Bettina Volkens, Chief Officer Corporate Human Resources & Legal Affairs of Deutsche Lufthansa AG. “We’re firmly convinced that these new CLAs are a good compromise which both offers attractive benefits and permits savings for our company.”
Both negotiating parties had accepted the recommendations of mediator Matthias Platzeck, including the adoption of a new retirement and transitional provisions system which will remain in effect until the end of 2023. Under the new system, the company will move from a scheme of guaranteed benefits to one of guaranteed contributions, as has already been agreed for Lufthansa’s ground personnel.
Lufthansa and UFO also found agreement on a 1% increase in cabin crew members’ remuneration from 1 October 2016 and a further 2% increase from 1 January 2018.
The new Collective Labor Agreement on Remuneration, which will remain valid until 30 June 2019, also envisages new qualification options for the company’s cabin personnel. The new bachelor’s-level training course will be offered in collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce & Industry, will extend over several months and will further raise the already high qualifications and service levels of Lufthansa’s cabin crew corps. “These new qualification options were very important to both sides,” says Bettina Volkens. “And they represent a genuine personnel-policy innovation that will truly benefit our cabin crew members.”
All Lufthansa cabin staff will also enjoy guaranteed further employment until 2021 under the new accords, with Lufthansa refraining from serving any notice on any such personnel for business-economic reasons for the next five years. The contractual parties have further agreed to adopt a number of conflict resolution mechanisms that will remain in effect until 2023. To take one example, in the event of the announcement of a full-scale strike, the company will be entitled to enlist a mediator and refer the possible industrial dispute to a binding mediation process.
Deutsche Lufthansa AG