Ljubljana Airport workers issue strike warning


Three unions representing employees at Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport have threatened to go on strike either in October or November if their salaries are not increased and working conditions improved. It comes just a week after pilots at Ljubljana Airport's busiest airline, Adria Airways, threatened to stage industrial action if their conditions are not met within their new collective bargaining agreements, which must be negotiated by the end of the week. The three unions at Ljubljana Airport have consolidated their ranks and are now coordinating their demands. "We are currently finalising them [demands], so we will forward this coordinated proposal for wage increases to the management next week. We are hoping for a positive response and possibly for further negotiations", unionist David Schwartz said. He added that the airport's operator, Fraport Slovenija, has so far shown little interest in meeting the demands of its employees.

Unions are requesting a 12% increase in wages, which would be adjusted annually for inflation. Furthermore, they are demanding bonuses for good business performance and an increase in extra pay for work on Sundays. "In the absence of any agreement relating to our expectations concerning wage increases or all of the listed demands, all three unions are in advanced talks to undertake further activities, including a strike that would take place in October or November", Mr Schwartz said. He added, "The German operator has shown an unacceptable attitude so far. They need to realise they are doing well in Slovenia, which is illustrated by the millions being invested in airport infrastructure. However, they also need to understand they must invest in people too".

Germany's Fraport took over control of Ljubljana Airport five years ago, when it purchased a 75.5% stake in the state-run operator for 177.1 million euros. It later bought the remaining shares for 57.3 million euros. Fraport has since opened an Aviation Academy facility at the airport and recently began construction of a new passenger terminal, which is to be completed by the summer of 2021. Furthermore, the airport handled a record number of travellers in 2018, which is expected to be eclipsed this year. The operator recently announced its plans to modernise the airport's logistics and IT infrastructure. Fraport has not publicly commented on the strike warning.




Comments

  1. What the hell is going on with aviation in Slovenia??

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    1. The sector was sold off to Germany.

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    2. Nothing that isn't happening in other EU countries as well.

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  2. What is the average age at Fraport Slovenia?

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    1. lol that was supposed to say wage not age.

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  3. I think they are all just making empty threats to have a better negotiating position.

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    1. I agree, I don't think strike will happen. They have given time till October to negotiate so they obviously don't want to trike.

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    2. We will see.

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  4. Has there ever been a strike at LJU?

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    1. I can't recall. There was one in Zagreb 5 years ago or so. It was quite disruptive. The court banned it in the end.

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    2. There has also been one off and on at PRN this year.

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    3. That strike in ZAG was brutal because all workers went on strike. All flights had to be diverted to other airports.

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    4. I hope the strike doesn't happen but if it does it will be interesting to see what kind of strike they have. One like in ZAG a few years ago or the one in PRN where only a few flights were disrupted.

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    5. Problem in Zagreb was related by the concession and the transfer of workers to the new concession company. In the end there was absolutely no point in that strike.

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  5. Welcome to capitalism my dear friends.

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    1. Bingo. That is called capitalism. You don't like it?! Planet asked for it, now we are living it. It is "natural" system stronger wins, weaker dies... then there will be some revolution, things would reset for super short period of time and same will be continued.

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    2. You don't like how a capitalist economy operates? Go enjoy communism in North Korea, Venezuela and Cuba!

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  6. 12% rise in wages???

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  7. 12%?! Dream on, dreamers.

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  8. Aviation in Slovenia seems to be falling apart. Shame.

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    1. It looks that way lately. The only upside is that construction of the new terminal at LJU has begun.

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  9. What the workers and union forget is that their jobs can be replaced. If they think they cannot be replaced, they should just look back at the Ronald Reagan years, where he fired all the air traffic controllers. Something which everyone would think is harder to replace than a regular airport worker.

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    1. So let them be replaced then. Good luck with finding enough staff without severely disrupting airport operations for months.

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    2. If I were director if airport now, i'd fire everyone who went on strike, every single one of them, sure I'd have interruption in operations for 3-4 months, but end result would be I'd have a new workforce that is willing to do an honest day of work.

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    3. @0918

      That's fine and dandy, but we have laws in Slovenia that allow workers to strike.

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    4. Fraport can still fire couple of people as a show of force. It will probably cost them, but could deter strike in the meanwhile.

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    5. @9:18

      Frankly, I doubt you have a day of experience managing any kind of business if you think like that.

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  10. Why isn't Bratusek being held responsible for anything? Adria is near collapse, LJU workers are issuing strike warning, Maribor Airport concession failed big time...

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    1. Bratusek wasn't in government when the Maribor concession was negotiated. As for the rest, she can't be held responsible for what goes on at private companies.

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    2. She was PM when they handed over Adria to 4K without any due diligence.

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    3. At least passenger numbers are up.

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    4. What would the Ministry of Transport have to do with Adria's collapse?

      It's the CAA who should finally stop this mess.

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    5. Well it was Ms Bratusek's government that 'sold' Adria, or should I say gifted to 4K. They should have done more research and known better.

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    6. So who was a better candidate to buy Adria?

      It was junk company back then, so nobody would buy it and it is junk today.

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    7. There were other candidates. If I remember correctly 3 companies bid for JP. One was Intro Aviation. Later it was revealed that there are links between government and 4K Invest.

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    8. By selling (well, just after injection couple of millions) Adria, the government has just extended the inevitable.

      Adria is unable to survive on the free market. And if they can't do that, they should make space for airlines who can.

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    9. @Anonymous28 August 2019 at 09:33:

      Simples, Intro Aviation.

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    10. Would it be any different with Intro?

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    11. Well, it doesn't look to bad at Cityjet.

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    12. Cityjet wasn't a government owned moneypit with employees who still thought it was still 1960 on the calendar.

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    13. Wtf has that anything to do with 4K being a shitty owner?!

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    14. @Anonymous 28 August 2019 at 15:32:

      So I guess poor 4K guys were bound to fail just because Adria's employees are all lazy communists?!

      Are you sure you're not one of the 4K turnaround specialists?

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  11. This is a response to increase (12% in next years) of minimum wage in Slovenia. It is a cascade effect, as now everyone wants an increase of their wage. Because otherwise the relationships between all wage grades will fall.

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    1. Interesting. BTW I notice they ask for extra pay on Sunday. Is it not the law in Slovenia to be paid extra for work on Sunday?

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    2. Yes. It is not written correctly. Extra pay on Sunday is required by law. The talks are about increase of extra pay.

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    3. Interesting. For example here in Serbia they considered abolishing it, thankfully they didn't but they abolished extra pay for night shifts.

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    4. It is not the Law, but ollective agreement that is different for every industry and non/commercial sector . They demand an increase of an obligatory addition to their regular hourly pay. Mostly the minimal addition is 50% and now they are asking for 80%.

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    5. It is required by law. Look at Zakon o delovnih razmerjih article 128.

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  12. Worst thing of all is that if the strike happens, Adria will suffer the most. And there is already a "I hate JP" campaign in newspapers...

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    1. I think, at the moment, a potential strike by the airport staff in 2 months time is the least of Adria's problems.

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    2. +1 last anom

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    3. well as adria is generating an operating loss from regular flights from LJU, not performing the LJU flights would not increasy their overall loss, so that would actually be a positive development

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  13. Uncalled-for or not, the industrial dispute's going to happen in the close future.

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  14. Well... this is turning out to be a total mess. Why do I have a feeling that the unions will not give up without a messy fight?

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  15. Workers rights must be protected, and their right to a strike is a success for which much blood has been spilled in past. Mean comments regarding the strike just show how great is lack of solidarity in the Balkans (regardless of ethnicity and "ethnic tolerance", it is a lack of human compassion in its prime).

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    1. Are you serious? So if I demand 75 days of holiday, company car for every employee and if I have union behind my back, then everything is legitimate?

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  16. I'm sick of this balkan stuff...

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    1. haha strikes and pay negotiations happen around the world.

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  17. supporting the unions !

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  18. 12% increase just seems quite high.

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  19. Reading the comments, you would never guess this region was under communism for 40 years.

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  20. What to expect fm German mgt philosophy and if Fraport is involved even worse. Just follow FRA than u know what to expect for LJU.

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    1. Why do you say so? What's going on at FRA?

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  21. It's so annoying when you have people who can't see past the end of their own noses. Legacy left over from the old communist times I guess.

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  22. If we take this potential strike out of the equation, I can't say I'm overly happy with Fraport now that I realize they have been managing the airport for 5 years. What is that they have done. In 5 years maybe 3 new airlines started flying to LJU which is not much. After delays the terminal construction has just finally begun although it should have been much earlier.

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    1. You have to look at the big picture. Slovenia is too small of a market that 50 new airlines would fly there just because Fraport is now in charge.

      Look at the development around the airport, Fraport academy, etc.

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    2. I agree with above comments. You can't expect similar results to concessions in bigger markets. I think they have done generally ok. The important thing is that passenger numbers are up.

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    3. And most important for Fraport is that they are making good profit at LJU.

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    4. The revenue and profit is the biggest in history of LJU. That's what matters to Fraport.

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    5. Precisely because of that they should increase pay for workers. It's a joint effort that they have managed to make such healthy profits.

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  23. Do EU passenger rights apply for compensation in case of airport strike?

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    1. Yes, there is still duty of care. But no compensation.

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    2. Not if the strike is previously announced.

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    3. The unions should compensate for all damages incurred.

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  24. What a bunch of primitive comments. Good thing you people are not demanding that trade union members are put in prison ...

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    1. That's not a bad idea :D They are just as bad as the mafia.

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    2. Exactly. Probably most of the negative comments are from CEOs. You know, the ones making a ton of money for not doing anything.

      Even if people earning minimum wage with unbearable conditions went on strike, comments would have been the same.

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  25. But why doesn't Fraport and lit sit down and talk to the unions? I'm sure this can be avoided.

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    1. I highly doubt Fraport can agree on 12% salary increase for everyone. It's just too much.

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    2. Fraport said they are happy to raise wages over 3 years, but unions want this to be done sooner.

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  26. How many employees at LJU?

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  27. I don't want to sound rude but airport is of general public importance and not private property of its employees

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    1. What exactly is your point? So the people working there should not get paid what they deserve? The workload has gone up, people got trained, more educated and are given more responsible tasks and salaries stayed the same. Not to mention the inflation.

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    2. .... or its owners (shareholders), isn't it ?

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  28. If it comes to it doesn't the Slovenian government have the power to rule a strike illegal if it disrupts the economy thus making the unions legally responsible for all damages?

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    1. Not the government, the Court, good Lord !!!!!!!!!!!

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  29. its only logical that nobody wants to work more for less money.

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    1. They are not complaining about duty times at all. They wan't higher wages for existing hours.

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    2. And it's frankly bizarre that unions don't complain about duty times. I can speak for passenger handling service where people are simply quitting mid-season because of exhaustion and those who didn’t quit (yet) are either way over-worked (12-13h shifts and more than 56 hours in seven consecutive days are normality) or on sick leave (exhaustion, hurry related accidents, wheelchair handling related accidents, fear of screwing up at check-in due to lack of concentration, etc).

      Instead of the strike unions are preparing we should do work-to-rule strike and follow every damn airport rule, carrier rule and safety regulation. And Fraport and media can have fun complaining about delays and cancellations.

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  30. Hope the strike doesn't go ahead but if it does, together with a highly likely Adria strike, it won't be good.

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    1. It would be unfortunate since LJU has been performing well, despite Adria numbers going down.

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  31. it would be very inconvenient if flights are cancelled due to airport closure

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  32. When you think about it and compare to other EU states, there have been relatively few strikes in the aviation sector in ex-Yu. In Belgium, Italy, France, Germany you have contant airline, airport and air traffic control strikes.

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  33. Any new routes planned from LJU in near future?

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    1. It all depends on Adria and its future.

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    2. Fraport said a few days ago they are apparently in talks with many airlines to start flights to LJU.

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    3. I don't buy it.

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    4. They have been saying the same thing about flights to the Persian Gulf for the past 5 years.

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    5. They've been in talks for years now. :)

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  34. this is the finish line (time wise) to extort some benefits. germany is starting to sneeze big time and will by almost all projections be in a recession in the autumn, and with SLO being basically dependent on german economy, things will not be rosy. so all the unions and employees are trying to catch the last train.

    not directly correlated but a sign that the economy is not that great anymore is the fact that some 2 weeks ago the labour and social ministry anounced they are already 70 million eur in the red.

    the unions are all well informed they have to push now or they are stuck in the position for some time.

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  35. The problem is not just the airport - its also Adria Airways.....how long will that airline still be "flying"

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  36. Good luck to unions and I hope they get what they ask for.

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  37. The situation is very simple: when aviation sector was in public hands, it was indeed sector, essential public infrastructure. Second it was sold (or given away) it became business. Difference between sector and business is, that in first case owner can and if in public domain will do things and invest in fields, which are not good in business sense, but are rather in public interest. That's why whe have State. By becoming business, it has become income and profit oriented, at expense of all the above, wages and working conditions included. That's why new terminal building in LJLJ will look like cheap Aldi store.

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    1. Sure, let's run every single company in the country as a "sector". Worked well back in the days. How many zeros did Yugoslavia have on the banknotes in late 1980s?

      Some people thing because aviation is a bit more complex than running busses or trains, that they should be paid in gold, preferably by state to whom they can dictate their own terms & conditions. What they forget is, that, at the end of the day, somebody has to pay for it. And until 5 years ago people in LJU and Adria (bust mostly the latter, as LJU was more or less always making money) thought they have jobs for life and can do whatever they want, as the taxpayers money will fill all the holes.

      Newsflash, times have changed.

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    2. Newsflash, employees have the right to strike. The new conditions will be such that will be acceptable to both sides. If you have problems with negotiating better terms, you should crawl back under the rock you came from.

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    3. Anon at 15:46, newsflash for you - check ownership of Fraport, Lufthansa and other strategic infrastructure companies....

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  38. I think they will be able to reach agreement.

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    1. Workers holding a press conference about possie strike will help.

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  39. Well Wizz just cancelled all winter flights to LJU, wonder why...???

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