The traffic drop caused by the COVID-19 crisis will very soon turn into financial impact on ANSPs. Some airlines even threaten to not pay for ATC services fees for the February period, to increase their chances of surviving the crisis. ANSPs are adjusting their financial plans. For example, DFS announced new labour agreements providing both planning and financial flexibility.
In this context, Airways New Zealand ATCOs proposed, via their union, to delay a pay increase planned for begin of April.
"New Zealand’s 371 air traffic controllers were due to receive a 2.8% pay increase on April 1. However this will not go ahead following an offer from the Air Traffic Control Council of the New Zealand Airline Pilots Association (NZALPA), on behalf of its members, to defer the pay increase for up to a year. Temporary amendments to the collective agreement have also been accepted to allow for greater flexibility in staff rosters, minimising the risk of service disruption through the pandemic."
This measure will certainly help and labour cost is a very significant part of all ANSPs' cost structure. However the impact of the crisis will require more massive measures. With traffic, and therefore fees down by 75% in certain parts of the world, it is almost certain that states will have to support their ATC organisations.