British Airways has decided to start a discussion with its pilots to stop a potentially damaging summer strike. The airline authority proposed a pay increase of pilots worth 11.5 % over three years and described it saying “fair and generous”. However, it was rejected by the pilots.
Meanwhile, the British Airline Pilots’ Association (Balpa) asserted that its members deserve a better raise as the BA has been making good profits. The two sides will meet at the conciliation service Acas. The pilots can vote in a strike ballot until 22 July. If the vote is in favor and the Balpa calls a strike, it would have to give the airline two weeks’ notice.
As Balpa represents around 90% of the airline’s pilots, it may cause severe disruption. Moreover, the strike would hit at one of the busiest times of the year. “We urge Balpa to come to an agreement to protect hard-working families planning their summer breaks,” the airline said in a statement. The Cabin crews have already agreed to BA’s offer.
British Airways is part of International Airlines Group (IAG) and possesses the Spanish carrier Iberia. Last year it asserted that a pre-tax profit of €3bn, up almost 9.8% on the previous year. The IAG, last month intended to buy 200 Boeing 737 Max aircraft. The deal was considered as a boost for Boeing which is trying to develop a software fix for 737 Max planes after two deadly crashes.