Norway: The movement against Wizz

by Roy Pedersen

The Norwegian minister of transport stated that owing to the EEA-agreement with the EU, the Norwegian government cannot forbid the dumping Company Wizz Air from making internal flights in Norway.

The use of internal Airports by Wizz Air has met with enormous protests. It started with the enclosed petition for signature among Trade Unionists. This plattform was first dicussed in the Trade Union committee of the organisation «No to European Union», but was in the end introduced by the leaders of the Regional committees of the Norwegian Trade Union Confederation (LO) in the bigger cities. Very soon it won a big support (see enclosed petition and signature in the newspaper «Klassekampen»)

The campaign was brought to the Parliament. The Socialdemocrats (with about 21% support), the Center Party (supporting districts are against the EU and EEA agreement with EU, and have, according to the opinion polls about a 20% of support), the Socialist Left Party (about 7-8% support) and the Red Party (about 4% support) are in some way or another opposed to Wizz Air in Norway.

The conservative prime minister, Erna Solberg, has stated that she will boycott Wizz Air. Local town councils have stated the same. In February there will be a big discussion in the Parliament about Wizz Air.

The Employers organisation has stated that Wizz Air can operate in Norway. The official LO will not sign the petition, formally because it is not introduced by LO itself, but in reality because they consider this campaign as a hidden attack on the EEA agreement.

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A careful reading of the petition shows that the EEA agreement is not mentioned. The main argument is that Wizz Air is an enemy of trade unions and that the company does not recognise the ILO Convention number 87, which gives the right to organise, and to collective bargaining. Our demands are to boycott Wizz Air and that the government should expel them from Norway. They can stay only if they let the people organise and sign the Norwegian collective agreement for the Aircompanies.

Despite covid-19, we are witnessing some exciting moments in the Norwegian class struggle.