Norwegian pilots threaten strike over contracts

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Norwegian could face strike action unless talks with pilot union Parat over staff contracts on 1 November are successful.

Parat has been angered by Norwegian's decision to negotiate individual contracts with pilots as part of its reallocation of contracts to its subsidiaries Norwegian Air Norway and Norwegian Air Resources. The union is demanding that all future agreements take the form of collective contracts with all members.

"Norwegian have said recently that they want to create a new pilot structure and this has consequences for our members," says Parat. "We want to make sure that the agreement we are going to have is going to apply to everyone in the future."

The union adds: “Norwegian has offered individual contracts to pilots in Denmark and Sweden that are not part of the collective agreement. We are not happy about this and it makes the situation more difficult."

Pay and working conditions are not on the agenda for the talks, says Parat.

Some 620 Norwegian pilots are members of the union. If no deal is reached by 3 November, members are expected to begin strike action the next day.

Asked to comment on the talks, the airline responds: "We have to respect the employment rules in Norway and let the mediation take its course and not speculate in the media. We know that Parat is presenting several versions of reality in the media these days that we are expected to comment on. However, we choose to respect Norway’s employment rules and let mediation take its course."