Ryanair agrees to recognise pilot unions to avert Christmas strike

Irish low-cost airline Ryanair has agreed to recognise pilot unions for the first time in its 32-year history to stop its first pilot strike in several European countries over the busy Christmas season. But its shares were down over 7% in Dublin trade on Friday. Ryanair said it has separately invited the pilot unions in Ireland, the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain and Portugal for talks to recognise them as the representative body for pilots in Ryanair in each of these countries. It called on the pilot unions to call off the threatened industrial action on Wednesday (Dec 20). Recognising unions will be a significant change for Ryanair, but the airline has delivered radical change before, Ryanair’s chief executive Michael O’Leary said.