ITF welcomes judge’s bid to rescue Mexican airline

March 1, 2012

Following 18 months of bankruptcy, the federal judge of bankruptcy protection measures Felipe Consuelo Soto has certified that Med Atlantic group will invest 300 million US dollars to aid Mexicana airline’s recovery.

Consuelo Soto addressed a press conference attended by representatives from the ministries of labour and communications and transport and ITF affiliates Asociación Sindical de Pilotos Aviadores de México (ASPA) and Asociación Sindical de Sobrecargos de Aviación (ASSA). He said that expectations for the airline were good, including for the more than 8,500 workers who lost their jobs on 28 August 2010. In addition, Consuelo Soto said that the first step was to complete debt restructuring and formalise the agreement with creditors.

David Cockroft, ITF general secretary, sent a letter to Mexico’s president, in which he welcomed the judge’s role in persuading authorities and trade unions to enter into a dialogue to end the uncertainty for workers. He also urged the government to respect workers’ rights, after a series of irregularities by the ministries of communications and transport and labour, which led to the closure of the airline.

However, the transport and communications ministry has failed to recognise the judge’s certification and stated that they could not legitimise the creditors as air operators until all debts had been paid off. This is creating a major setback in the agreements reached so far.

ASPA and ASSA workers are calling for unity against the government’s lack of interest in resolving the 18 months of problems. They are also supporting pressure by the judge and remain committed to fighting to see the airline restructured and routes and flight slots – which have been designated to other national airlines – restored.

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