Last updated: 19 July, 2011

Air Algerie talks to resume on Thursday

Negotiations between the management of Air Algerie and staff, who staged a strike last week over pay that grounded dozens of planes, will resume Thursday, a union representative said.

A mediation from Algerian Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia on July 14 was needed to end the four-day strike by some 900 cabin crew who were demanding a 106 percent pay increase and a similar status to that of pilots.

The two sides starting talking at the weekend, but union leaders suspended negotiations claiming a promise to reinstate workers sacked during the strike was not honoured.

Workers representatives and management have agreed to hold three meetings a week to address striker’s demands, head of the general union of Algerian workers Yassine Hamamouche told AFP Monday.

He added that Thursday’s meeting will focus on the demand for a pay hike.

The state airline’s chief Mohamed Salah Boultif had previously offered a 20 percent pay hike. Cabin crew declined the offer and Boultif has acknowleged having room for manoeuvre.

Hamamouche said his union wants the talks concluded within two weeks.

The ailing airline, which carries nearly 3.5 million passengers annually to more than 70 destinations, ranks fourth in Africa, behind Egypt Air, South African Airways and Royal Air Maroc.

The strike hit when many France-based Algerian expatriates make their annual trip to see relatives.