EasyJet pilots have suspended the strike they had planned earlier. This has been revealed by the UK's commercial pilots' union British Airline Pilots Association (Balpa).
On Wednesday (21 September), easyJet pilots had voted "overwhelmingly" in favour of industrial action over fatigue. However, the current decision comes amid the union receiving a few proposals from easyJet's management that is aimed at tackling the fatigue issue.
Balpa said these new proposals made by the budget airline will be put to pilots in a consultative ballot.
Brian Strutton, Balpa's general secretary, was cited by the BBC as saying, "We have been working hard today and over the last few days to find a solution to this dispute about pilot fatigue. Easyjet management have put a proposal on the table that the Balpa team feel has closed the gap between us considerably on a range of issues. We therefore feel it is right and proper to consult with our members at this stage and so we are suspending serving notice of industrial action on the company."
Strutton cautioned that the dispute still remained unresolved. But he admitted there had been "sufficient progress" to resolve this concern of pilots.
This follows German rival TUIfly denying earlier reports that it was in talks to be acquired by easyJet. Jochen Buentgen, managing director at the German carrier, told his staff in a letter that this was just speculation "without foundation". The letter also said, "cooperation with, or acquisition of a stake in, easyJet is neither in preparation nor is this being sought."
The Telegraph citing German news reports, said that the British low-cost carrier was earlier hoping to acquire TUIfly amid the Brexit vote. It was said that this takeover would help easyJet establish a headquarters in the European Union. This in turn would help avoid trade restrictions imposed on airlines that are present outside the bloc and to gain access to the EU air travel market through the Single European Sky system.
However, sources close to the company have reportedly said that easyJet has now changed its plans. It is said that the airline will now move its legal headquarters to an EU country and acquire an air operator certificate. Hence, easyJet now does not have the need to acquire a company to avert the potential Brexit fallout, the source explained.