Lufthansa settles on 22,000 full-time job cuts

Markus Mainka /

After concluding talks with representatives of pilot and flight attendant unions, Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) has punched in the final number of redundancies it plans to conduct due to the current crisis and overcapacity at the German airline group. The company indicated that these numbers will be lost permanently.

In total, Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) indicates that 22,000 jobs are surplus at the group at various “business segments and almost all companies in the Group.”

Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) as an airline plans to lay-off 5,000 employees, including 500 pilots and 2,600 flight attendants, while three subsidiary airlines, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines and Eurowings will cut 1,100, 1,000 and 300 jobs, respectively. Further 500 full-time positions are under threat at Lufthansa Cargo.

“According to our current assumptions about the course of business over the next three years, we have no perspective of employing one in seven pilots and one in six flight attendants as well as numerous ground staff at Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA) alone,” stated Michael Niggemann, a member of the company’s executive board.

While the airline plans to keep 100,000 jobs and reduce layoffs as much as possible, such goals are only achieved if the negotiations with unions on the crisis agreements end “with a joint success,” added Niggeman.

The Frankfurt-based airline group plans to conclude negotiations on June 22, 2020.

“In the biggest crisis in aviation history, we want to secure over 100,000 jobs in the Lufthansa Group in the long term, despite all the challenges. To achieve this, painful restructuring measures are unavoidable, which we want to implement in a socially responsible manner,” concluded Niggeman.

Lufthansa’s (LHAB) (LHA) latest financial update provided an outlook of the future, as it expected to have 300 aircraft parked in 2021, 200 in 2022 and 100 in 2023, which could be the end of the crisis, indicated the company.

After the initial meetings with executives, unions themselves expected that 26,000 jobs would be lost at the group. Pilots of the Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) union offered wage concessions of up to 45% in order to cut the group’s labor costs by up to $400 million (€350 million).


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