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Swissport focus on resolving current pay dispute and reducing passenger disruption caused by the unnecessary threat of strike action by Unite

Swissport International Ltd are disappointed to learn of the impending strike action by members of Unite, despite having matched the pay demands previously made by Unite. Representatives of the Company have pro-actively contacted officials of both Unite and ACAS in an attempt to resume talks aimed at ending the dispute and have now agreed to an conciliation meeting with both Unite and ACAS on the 20th December 16. Swissport has also offered to enter into a binding arbitration process with ACAS and Unite in return for Unite calling off the proposed strike.

Numerous offers have been made to the Union since April 2015 however the Union have refused to put many of these offers to their members for consideration. The latest pay offer was in line with what the union representatives had previously indicated they were prepared to accept and would give all staff an overall increase of 4.65% on their current basic rates of pay, together with additional holiday pay, and increases to overtime rates and other pay supplements for the majority of the workers covered by the agreement.

Over 6,000 staff are employed in the areas impacted by the strike action, but less than 1,200 were included in the ballot which rejected the offer by a majority of only 296.

Swissport will do everything within its power to limit any impact of the proposed industrial action on the airlines it serves and their passengers.

A spokesman for the Company said “This is another in a series of recent examples where a minority of trade union members are acting in a cynical fashion to disrupt the travel plans of the public and attempt to hold employers to ransom, without giving thought to the long term job security of staff, and the commercial viability of employers. We operate in a very low margin and highly competitive sector and our overall pay and conditions already compare favourably with our competitors. We therefore believe the offer already made is very reasonable and would have been welcomed by the majority of our staff. We remain committed to resolving this matter as soon as possible while protecting the interests of our customers, airline passengers and ultimately our staff.”

Swissport International Ltd. provides ground services for around 230 million passengers and handles 4.1 million tonnes of cargo a year on behalf of some 835 client-companies in the aviation sector. With a workforce of around 61,000 personnel, Swissport is active at more than 280 stations in 48 countries across five continents, and generates consolidated operating revenue of CHF 3.0 billion. www.swissport.com

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