ETF Statement on the EU Commission’s Approval of Lufthansa’s Stake in ITA Airways

3 Jul 2024

The European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF) acknowledges the European Commission’s recent decision to approve Lufthansa’s acquisition of a 41 per cent stake in ITA Airways. This decision is pivotal not only for the future of ITA Airways but also for job stability and the broader competitiveness of the EU aviation sector.

Throughout this long process, ETF’s Italian and German affiliates have had a continued dialogue and cooperation, having in mind the common objective of improving workers’ terms and conditions, proving how crucial international trade union cooperation is in a sector that know no borders.

Together with our members in the two concerned countries, the ETF has been providing evidence on the fact that Lufthansa’s acquisition of ITA Airways is crucial for securing the airline’s solid future and ensuring job stability for its employees.

Sabine Trier, Deputy General Secretary of ETF, stated, “In a context of growing competition from non-EU carriers, the EU should aim at taking decisions that reinforce its airlines and its whole aviation sector. This should go hand in hand with structural changes to improve the social performance of the sector, as downward pressure on working conditions has been significant over the last decades.”

We believe that decisions in transport – in particular in the transport sectors that are directly exposed to international competition – should be made according to a strategic approach and taking into account the global situation. Taking decisions solely on EU competition rules would leave the sector struggling on the global level.

In this respect, developing an EU industrial policy to address challenges from within and outside the EU is evident. Such a policy should fully include aviation, an essential sector for ensuring mobility and connectivity within the EU and with other regions of the world.”

The ETF and its affiliates will keep engaging at all levels to ensure that this development benefits the workers in the two countries and within Europe.