Boeing has reached a tentative labour deal with about 21,000 engineers and technical workers following sometimes difficult negotiations.

The four-year contract proposals now must be voted on by the members of the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA).

The union announced the deal in an online notice posted around 3:30pm EST.

"Union negotiators are recommending members approve the agreements," the notice says.

Details of the agreements will be presented first at a SPEEA special meeting meeting scheduled for 5pm, local time, in Seattle.

A possible "yes" vote would ensure no disruption to Boeing's aircraft programmes, which are only now recovering from a two-month strike by the 27,000 members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM).

The outcome of the discussions was far from assured only a day ago.

Citing unresolved stumbling blocks and non-responsiveness by Boeing negotiators, SPEEA leaders yesterday set a vote to authorize a strike if negotiations failed.

On Tuesday, SPEEA executive director Ray Goforth warned in a public text message that there would be "consequences" for Boeing's conduct in negotiations.

"This has been tough negotiations, but we're very pleased to have an agreement," a Boeing spokeswoman says.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news