Lufthansa Cargo is reducing the short-time working rate for its ground staff in Germany to 20 per cent. The Lufthansa Cargo Executive Board and the Works Council has signed a corresponding agreement, which will remain in effect until 28 February 2011. This measure will enable the company to continue to adjust its staffing capacities flexibly to declining demand in the air cargo business.
Under the terms of the new agreement, all ground staff (including non-pay-scale employees, who are not bound by the collective agreement) will in future work 20 per cent - rather than 25 per cent - fewer hours. Executive Board members and senior executives will continue to take a voluntary pay cut while the measure remains in force.
"The crisis is not yet over. The latest positive developments in our traffic figures still reflect a significant drop in cargo volume compared with the pre-crisis period. It will take still some time to return to the level we achieved in 2007 or 2008. Overall, the global air freight industry has lost four years of growth due to the crisis," said Peter Gerber, Lufthansa Cargo Executive Board member responsible for Finance and Human Resources. "Lufthansa Cargo will continue to implement short-time working flexibly within the terms of the new company agreement in cooperation with the Works Council and the unions. However, the extension of the agreement does not automatically mean that Lufthansa Cargo will implement short-time working arrangements until 28 February 2011. Rather we can, at any time, to end short-time working before that date. But only on condition that demand in the air cargo market continues to grow sharply."
Gerber added: "At the moment we are cautiously optimistic that we will be able to further reduce short-time working arrangements or, if there are further improvements, phase out short-time completely in the course
of this year."
About 2,600 ground staff employed by Lufthansa Cargo in Germany have been on short-time working since 1 March 2009. The corresponding agreement run for one year and expires on 28 February 2010.