Air France is launching legal action against its own pilots after failing to make a breakthrough in restructuring talks to halt its falling revenues.
It comes a day after the airline announced cuts of some 80-million euros and the closure of several loss-making lines.
But union leaders have described the move as irresponsible.
Emmanuel Mistrali from the Syndicat National des Pilotes de Ligne said: “This is unprecedented. On top of it, it was announced through the press with words that are journalistic indeed but amount to a declaration of war against pilots. So we’re deeply appalled by this announcement.”
Air France, like other traditional carriers, faces severe
competition from low-cost rivals on regional routes and from state-backed airlines such as Emirates for long-haul passengers.
A strike last year over its existing productivity drive cost the company 500 million euros.
Air France said it may also defer deliveries of new Airbus A350 and Boeing 787 aircraft and retire another Airbus A340 early because the older plane achieves poor fuel economy.