Iberia and labour unions search for common ground

Iberia, the Spanish subsidiary of International Airlines Group (IAG), is facing day two of a five-day strike organised by labour unions as both sides try to reach common ground on the most conflictive issues in negotiations: salaries, job cuts, and productivity.

Iberia, the Spanish subsidiary of International Airlines Group (IAG), is facing day two of a five-day strike organised by labour unions as both sides try to reach common ground on the most conflictive issues in negotiations: salaries, job cuts, and productivity.

According to Spanish daily El Economista, the main dispute is over the labour unions' request that no additional lay-offs be realised for a significant period of time. IAG is against the request due to the uncertainty that the airline sector faces over the short- and medium- term.

Unions consider the request to be a fundamental step in the talks because more lay-offs would violate the terms of a regulated layoff plan.

In a separate matter, IAG may be considering a higher offer for low-cost airline Vueling. According to El Confidencial, the price would be between €7.50 and €8.00 per share, up from an initial offer of €7.00.

Analysts at Ahorro Corporacion Financiera say that the new offer would ease tension among shareholders because it would be considered an equitable price that approaches the airline's book value of €8.08.

Regardless, they pointed out that IAG is governed exclusively by the rules applicable to voluntary offers, in which case the offerer is not required to offer an equitable price.

SB

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