The Malta Hotels and Restaurants Association (MHRA) has urged for a reconciliation between the Airline Pilots Association and the Government amid disruptions of Air Malta’s flight schedule. It has offered to help bridge differences between the two parties as a number of pilots were reportedly protesting new working conditions brought on by the restructuring of the national airline.

On Monday (yesterday) a number of flights were delayed, disrupting the airline’s operations as the APLA ordered its members to follow a work to rule order.

“Air Malta is key to the tourism industry and the economic wellbeing of the country, and indeed Government along with the relevant stakeholders are already doing a lot to ensure that the national airline remains afloat,” read the MHRA’s statement.

The airline is currently undergoing restructuring and is slated to be replaced by a new national airline by the end of the year after the European Commission refused to grant the Government permission to give Air Malta a capital injection €290 million due to state aid rules.

Referring to the recovery of the travel, tourism and hospitality sector following losses brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, the MHRA appealed to the ALPA to be responsibility, “before causing any further disruptions which will directly hurt the people of goodwill who have been waiting for this moment for their business to finally pick up again.”

MHRA expressed its confidence that leaders of the ALPA will take its appeal constructively and will resort to discussions rather than disruptive action and has offered to assist in bridging any differences between the Government and ALPA that would reflect a fair deal for all.

“Any other avenue will lead nowhere but to a disaster. Let’s keep the wellbeing of the national airlines as the priority for the wellbeing of our country,” concluded the MHRA.

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