Air India has convened a meeting of foreign pilots' recruitment agencies on Wednesday to discuss its proposal to slash wages by 10 per cent, in its bid to reduce costs and the differences between the pay packets of Indian and foreign pilots.
The meeting comes in the backdrop of the agencies opposing any unilateral move on lowering foreign pilots' wages and allowances and demanding negotiations before any such decision being implemented.
"The AI management has called a meeting on December 16 to discuss the issue of reduction in the wages of expatriate pilots," a source close to the development said.
The agencies, supplying foreign pilots to the national carrier, have also asked the management not to go ahead with its plan of implementing the proposal from January 1, they said, adding, "initially the management had proposed these cuts from December itself, but after the agencies protested, it extended the cut-off date till January 1."
The agencies want to consult the pilots before they accept or reject the proposal, they said.
Air India has recently proposed a 10 per cent cut in the salaries of about 150 expat pilots currently on its rolls, besides slashing their bonuses by 50 per cent and withdrawal of reimbursements including travel to home base, licence, medical costs and visa fees. The expat pilots are paid through approved agencies which are given a monthly fee.