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Wage talks break down with Austrian Airlines

Talks between Austrian Airlines and their staff over pay were called off on Friday after the works council rejected a proposed wage deal from the Austrian company.

Staff voted to reject the offer during a three hour long meeting between over 1000 employees that took place earlier last week and caused the cancellation of over 30 flights. Austrian Airline employees argued that the offer risked a loss in real wages.

The works council said that they are ready to begin negotiations again but also reiterated that strikes are still being considered as an option.

The current dispute between the airline and its cabin crew staff has been going on since 2012 when Austrian Airlines transferred its operation to subsidiary company Tyrolean Airlines after negotiations failed with staff. The move reduced the airline's pension obligations, helping to put the business back to profit last year but it was an unpopular move with unions.

The airline said that it was hoped last weeks offer, which included new flight duty rules and salary scales and a new pension fund would allow the company the stability to expand and develop its services, including replacing some of its planes. The company have now said that these plans have been put on hold.

"Our employees wish for an agreement and a clear perspective moving forward. They also desire to return to Austrian Airlines. We want to make this possible," Austrian Airlines CEO Jaan Albrecht said prior to the decision on Friday.

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