Flight staff of Dutch airline KLM agree on wage cuts, trade union says

FILE PHOTO: KLM airline airplanes are seen parked, as Schiphol Airport reduces its flights due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Amsterdam, Netherlands April 2, 2020. REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - KLM, the Dutch arm of Air France-KLM SA AIRF.PA, has reached an agreement with its flight staff, excluding pilots, over cost cuts needed in return for state aid, trade union FNV said on Thursday.

The union had agreed to temporary wage cuts and better severance payments for people who lose their jobs in the upcoming reorganisation of the airline, FNV said without giving more details.

The agreement came just in time for an Oct. 1 deadline set by the Dutch government for KLM to come up with a restructuring plan, in return for the 3.4 billion euros ($4 billion) in bailout loans and guarantees it provided to help the company survive the COVID-19 pandemic.

In return for the government’s support, KLM has to cut costs by about 15% and reduce emissions by 50% by 2030.

The company still has to reach an agreement with pilot union VNV over their wage cuts.

In July, KLM said it would cut another 1,500 jobs, for a 20% reduction in staff from pre-pandemic levels, while a pay hike agreed for 2020 was frozen.

Reporting by Bart Meijer; Editing by Rashmi Aich