Ryanair offers to recognise unions in bid to avert Xmas strikes

The chief executive of Ryanair said that the airline would recognise unions in order to avoid Christmas strikes

Up to 117 members of the Irish Airline Pilots' Association still plan to strike on Wednesday.

A spokesman said: "Ryanair today confirmed that the German pilot union and IMPACT/IALPA have agreed to Ryanair's offer of meetings to agree union recognition on Wednesday December 20".

Budget airline Ryanair will recognise pilot unions to avoid a Christmas strike on December 20 which would have grounded some flights.

"Ryanair has again called on IMPACT/ IALPA to cancel the threatened industrial action on Wednesday December 20 (as the Italian and German unions have already done) which is causing unnecessary concern and worry for thousands of Ryanair customers travelling home during Christmas week".

Chief executive Michael O'Leary said the airline would reconsider its policy of refusing to recognise labour groups.

The airline on Tuesday had previously insisted that any discussion of pay and working conditions should be discussed through management-controlled "employee representative councils".

More news: Gareth Bale's victor saves Real Madrid from humiliation against Al Jazira

Ryanair said on Friday it had written to pilot unions in Ireland (Other OTC: IRLD - news), the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and Portugal in a bid to smooth turbulent industrial relations by offering talks on officially recognising the unions for the first time.

Mr O'Leary spoke to the airline's chief captains across its nearly 90 bases.

Such a move would involve half of the company's pilots - mostly captains - forcing Ryanair to cancel many services.

"It's now up to Ryanair to prove the seriousness of this announcement", Ilja Schulz, VC president, said on Friday.

At this point, it seems that all eyes are on Ryanair to prevent this strike.

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