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Ryanair to meet Irish pilots' union in bid to halt strike

18 December 2017

The Irish carrier offered to recognise unions for the first time on Friday after pilots in Ireland, Britain, Germany, Italy, Spain and Portugal threatened walkouts.

In a statement IMPACT said it is available to meet with management today or anytime over the weekend.

Ryanair and the Irish pilots' union look set to meet for talks next week in a bid to avert a pre-Christmas strike.

"Putting the needs of our customers first, and avoiding disruption to their Christmas flights, is the reason why we will now deal with our pilots through recognised national union structures and we hope and expect that these structures can and will be agreed with our pilots early in the New Year".

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The union added that it had asked Ryanair to release its pilot representatives to prepare for and attend the meeting.

In October, Mr O'Leary wrote to his airline's pilots to offer them better pay and conditions after Ryanair was forced to cancel thousands of flights.

The pilots had backed industrial action by a margin of 94 per cent to six per cent in secret ballots.

However, a majority of pilots used by the airline in Ireland are not directly employed by the company.

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"Ryanair today confirmed that the German pilot union and IMPACT/IALPA have agreed to Ryanair's offer of meetings to agree union recognition on Wednesday 20 December", said the statement.

While the decision to recognise trade unions for the first time in Ryanair's 32-year history has averted the threat of strikes, the move rattled investors and its shares fell nearly 9 percent on Friday.

It will bring certainty to Ryanair passengers travel plans over the Christmas period.

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Ryanair to meet Irish pilots' union in bid to halt strike