Turismo de Portugal attacks TAP pilots for calling 10-day strike

As passengers booked with Portugal’s TAP airline are cancelling reservations “en-masse”, criticism for pilots who have called a looming 10-day strike is coming from all sides.

Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho has said the strike puts TAP “at risk”, while his deputy Paulo Portas claims it is “unreasonable” for people to hold a company to ransom. Now Turismo de Portugal says the strike shows “disrespect” for everyone working in the tourism sector.

But the bottom line, so far, is that the strike is due to start at midnight on Friday, May 1.

Pilots union SPAC, backed by as many as 500 pilots working for the troubled airline, say the government and management have reneged on past agreements and that union members will continue to act with serenity – appealing instead for the government to show “good sense” and “responsibility”.

As variously reported in the national press, TAP is running with massive losses (over €85 million last year) and prospective buyers in the long-running privatisation process are losing enthusiasm.