Tallink has tabled a new offer in its labor dispute with crew members. The ferry company says it would increase spending on payroll by close to 6 percent, uudised.err.ee reported.
The company said it proposes to increase the pay fund to 3.7 million euros, from a level of 3.5 million. The devil is in the details - specifically, how the increase would be distributed.
Word from the unions is that some substantive discussion is taking place. The Seamen's Independent Union chairman Jüri Lember said talks are focusing on striking a balance between wages for different positions.
"There's about an 80 percent chance we will reach an agreement," he said in business daily Äripäev, saying that a sticking point was that bonuses for the busy summer season on the fast ships have to be put in proper legal form.
The union said it would wait for Tallink's pay fund offer to be made formally by the state conciliator and it would then call a meeting to discuss the proposal.
For its part, Tallink Group personnel and development director Vahur Ausmees told Äripäev Tallink has been prepared to negotiate and had acted in the same spirit. Things had appeared at a stalemate last week, with both sides charging that the other was non-constructive.