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Finnair plans more furloughs, savings drive

The airline plans to cut costs by 80 million euros per year.

Kuvassa on Finnairin lentokoneita toukokuussa Helsinki-Vantaan lentokentällä. Koneet ovat maassa koronaviruspandemian vuoksi.
Finnair planes are grounded at the moment. Yle pictured these at Helsinki Vantaa Airport from a helicopter on 8 May. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle

Finnair announced plans for more staff furloughs as its traffic stands at just five percent of normal volumes.

The firm had already furloughed large chunks of its workforce, but is now also looking to slash costs by 80 million euros a year from 2019 levels by the start of 2022.

"It's clear that if we are flying a lot less than usual, the amount of work available is also smaller," said Finnair Senior Vice President for HR Johanna Karppi.

Co-determination talks will affect all 6,100 of Finnair's Finland-based workforce. Staff based abroad will be subject to similar cost-reduction negotiations in line with local legislation.

Finnair's statement said that the firm expects demand in aviation to recover to 2019 levels within 2-3 years.

"The coronavirus changes the aviation market considerably also in the long run," said the firm's CEO, Topi Manner, in a statement. "In the short-term, we must adjust our operations to the substantially decreased demand. In addition to the previously published temporary layoffs, we have today announced that we will commence discussions related to further adjustment measures. The Finnish temporary layoff practices enable flexible adjustment measures both for the employer and the employees during these exceptional circumstances."

Finnair has previously announced plans to slash services to scarcely-used provincial airports in Finland.

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