Air France and Pilots Agree to Develop Transavia France Further

Air France-KLM Group reached a preliminary agreement with pilots at its French subsidiary that will let the carrier expand its short-haul business to better compete with discount carriers such as Easyjet Plc.

The text of the agreement will be submitted tomorrow to directors of the airline’s biggest pilot union with final signing targeted for in mid-November, according to a release today.

The agreement, which allows the Transavia low-cost short-haul division in France to operate more than the current limit of 14 aircraft, will give Air France the means to boost capacity on shorter routes without being obligated to turn to Air France. The fresh accord comes after Air France-KLM dropped plans to create a pan-European low-cost operation called Transavia Europe in the face of opposition from pilots.

“Air France believes that this balanced solution, the fruit of socially responsible dialog, will allow for the rapid development of Transavia France and will create greater value for customers and personnel,” the airline said.

Pilots working at Transavia France, the French sister company to Transavia in the Netherlands, will be employed under the same working conditions and salaries as those at Air France, the airline said. Pilots moved to the Transavia unit will work under two co-existing contracts, one for Transavia France, the other for Air France, the company said.

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