Norwegian Air Announces Layoffs At Bases In Spain.
Norwegian Air Shuttle has announced to the workforce today, Monday, May 3, that it intends to initiate a collective dismissal procedure for 1,191 workers from its bases in Spain in the coming days, which would affect 85 per cent of its workforce in the country.
As reported by the USO union and confirmed by the company, the airline, immersed in a deep crisis due to the impact of the pandemic, plans to stop operating long-haul flights from Barcelona, and intends to undertake a “brutal cut” of short-haul operations, with the closure of three of its five bases.
According to the USO statement, in reference to short-haul operations, Norwegian has announced its intention to render the bases in Barcelona, Gran Canaria, and Tenerife “inoperative.”
The company has said it will maintain the operational bases of Malaga and Alicante, although one aircraft will operate from each of them during this year.
In a statement, the company states that the layoffs are “a consequence of the cessation of the company’s long-distance operations and the downsizing of its short-distance operations. It is a restructuring process that Norwegian has carried out in each and every one of the markets where the company already had operations: the Nordic countries, the United Kingdom, the United States, Italy, and France.”
Norwegian estimates that “for the summer of 2022 and, under the scenario of six aircraft based in Spain (three in Alicante and another in Malaga), it will need crew members in the region of 215 personnel, including pilots and cabin crew.”
Although it does not rule out that “the final number of people finally employed may end up being higher – depending on what can be agreed with the unions, regarding types of contracts and reductions in working hours, among other elements.”
Ryanair had warned that the critical situation facing the airline industry could lead to more stoppages of European Union airlines throughout this year. “Eurocontrol foresees more bankruptcies in 2021”, said the low-cost airline, recalling that “the Covid pandemic has caused the closure of airlines such as Flybe, Germanwings, Level Europe, and Montenegro Airlines”.
It pointed directly to Norwegian, reminding everyone that the airline had requested a pre-bankruptcy meeting of creditors in several of its companies.