21 Dec 2011

Airline - union truce reached

9:35 am on 21 December 2011

Qantas has negotiated a truce with one of the three unions at the centre of an industrial dispute that saw the airline grounded two months ago.

The Engineers Union has accepted a pay rise of 3% in return for agreeing to new work practices, but the dispute is far from over.

The proposed agreement has been submitted to Fair Work Australia for approval.

In a statement Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said it includes around 1600 licensed aircraft engineers, new licensing conditions and retirement transition arrangements.

The deal is the first between Qantas and one of the unions involved in a dispute with the airline that saw the fleet being grounded in October before the federal government ordered all parties into arbitration.

Engineers union federal secretary Steve Purvinas says the agreement will mean job security for his members.

But the ABC reports Qantas still has to do a deal with two other major unions before peace can be declared.

The Transport Workers Union and the Pilots Union will go to arbitration with the airline next year.