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    Will planes stay on the airfield during May long weekend? Last chance talks have begun

    On Sunday before 11 a.m. another round of talks began between the management of the Polish Air Navigation Agency (PAŻP) and representatives of air traffic controllers’ unions. It’s about working conditions and wages.

    Negotiations between the management of the Polish Air Navigation Agency and representatives of the Air Traffic Controllers’ Union have been ongoing for several days on issues such as safety, working rules and compensation rules. The next round of talks began on Sunday at 11 a.m.

     

    On Saturday, Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said he was still hoping for a compromise. “I am in constant contact with Minister (Andrzej) Adamczyk. The Minister is in constant contact with the management of the Polish Air Navigation Agency. Yes, he has also presented me with reserve plans in case such an agreement is not reached,” Morawiecki says.

     

    The Prime Minister added that Minister Adamczyk “will present these reserve plans in due course.”

     

    “This whole issue, these plans are aimed above all at ensuring the safety of flights over the territory of the Republic of Poland and as many of those flights as possible, so as to minimise the impact on vital interests, i.e., military aid, i.e., the whole movement associated with humanitarian and military aid, but of course we will also try to achieve many civilian objectives,” Morawiecki has stressed.

     

    The previous meeting of the PAZP leadership with representatives of the air traffic controllers’ union took place on Friday. As the agency reported at the time, the trade unionists submitted their proposal to management late on Thursday evening.

     

    According to the information previously provided by the PAZP, a group of auditors from Warsaw did not agree to the new remuneration rules which entered into force at the end of last year. 112 air traffic controllers, represented by the board of the air traffic controllers union, have sent declarations of intent to the employer refusing to accept the terms and conditions offered to them in accordance with the Agency’s Remuneration Regulations. In February this year, the agency announced that it was dealing with the withdrawal of territorial and approach controls from Warsaw – “almost 170 people are on notice, most of which ends at the end of April 2022.” In February this year, 208 area and approach controllers were employed in Warsaw.

     

    On Friday, the president of the Civil Aviation Authority, Piotr Samson, announced that about two-thirds of the flights between Warsaw and Modlin could be cancelled from 1 May if no agreement was reached with the air traffic controllers.

     

    The European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation (Eurocontrol) also announced on Friday that, in the event of disagreement with the inspectors, the number of air traffic controllers will be sufficient to reach Warsaw airports with a total capacity of about 170 flights per day 7.5 hours (from 9.30 a.m. to 5 p.m.). As reported, the two Warsaw airports are currently planning to handle an average of 510 flights per day in May.

     

    The Civil Aviation Authority informed that Eurocontrol had not initiated the “massive cancellation” procedure. From 1 May, flights from Polish regional airports and over Poland will be operated without sudden disruptions. Irregularities may occur in Warsaw and Modlin. (PAP) 

     

    PAŻP is the only training and employment institution for air traffic controllers in the country. They are on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

     

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