Victory for Portuguese affiliate in negotiations on ground handling sector

6 Jul 2016

The Portuguese government has declared that it will stop the liberalisation process and establish a strategic approach for the ground handling sector in Portugal. The announcement comes on the eve of ETF affiliate SITAVA planned strike actions in the Portuguese airports to protest against the consequences of the liberalisation in the sector. The union has therefore decided to call off the strike and welcomes together with the ETF the recognition the Portuguese government shows regarding the role of collective agreements in the further development of the industry.

At the beginning of July SITAVA planned strikes in all Portuguese airports to protest against massive job losses, the increase of precarious work and the lack of respect for workers. ETF expressed its full support in a solidarity statement adopted by the civil aviation section on 15 June.

After the announcement of the industrial actions the Portuguese government opened negotiations with the union and expressed its strong support for the adoption of vertical collective agreements for the whole sector. The government also committed to follow closely the negotiations on the collective redundancies in Portway to ensure compliance with the legislation.

The agreement negotiated with the government offers new opportunities to establish a good basis for constructive social dialogue in the Portuguese ground handling sector. ETF encourages the involved companies to grasp this occasion with both hands and use it to strengthen the sector and improve the conditions for the workers.