Eleventh Hour Deal Halts Icelandic Airports Strike

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Eleventh Hour Deal Halts Icelandic Airports Strike

By Alëx Elliott
Keflavík International Airport

Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

Icelandic airport workers have struck a deal with employers that means their threatened long-term walkout did not happen today.

According to RÚV, a new contract was agreed between Isavia, which runs Icelandic airports and airspace, on the one side, and the Association of State Aviation Workers, The National Association of Fire Fighters, and the SFR union of public service workers, on the other.

The contract lasts for three years and includes a 2.8 percent wage increase and up to four percent next year and the following year.

Kristján Jóhannsson, the workers’ chief negotiator, described the contract as “acceptable”.

Following a series of disruptive five-hour closures, the most recent of which was last Wednesday, the workers’ deadline for a contract agreement expired at 04.00 this morning. With no agreement all Icelandic airports, including Keflavík International Airport, would have closed indefinitely. Only a new contract agreement or government action to outlaw the strike would have opened them again.

Already last night the workers declared that their indefinite strike would be postponed until 22nd May, but now there is hope the whole dispute has been completely resolved. The contract between the parties has been signed and the strike has been canceled permanently. The spotlight now moves to whether or not Icelandair pilots will begin industrial action in the coming weeks.

 

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