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American Airlines pilots ask carrier to start negotiations for a new contract

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FILE PHOTO: Pilots talk as they look at the tail of an American Airlines aircraft following the announcement of the planned merger of American Airlines and US Airways, at Dallas-Ft Worth International Airport February 14, 2013. REUTERS/Mike Stone

(Reuters) – American Airlines (AAL.O) pilots union on Monday urged the carrier to begin negotiations for a new labor contract in January to boost salaries that were last revised in 2017.

The No. 1 U.S. carrier signed a five-year contract with its pilots in early 2015, providing immediate pay raises of 23 percent and subsequent annual raises of three percent.

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Allied Pilots Association (APA), representing 15,000 American Airlines pilots, said “it’s time” to move beyond the labor contract borne out of bankruptcy, as it pursues a revised agreement amid booming demand for air travel.

“With respectful communication and open dialogue, there is no reason why we cannot achieve a better contract,” APA President Captain Daniel Carey said in a statement.

“We fully intend to conclude these negotiations in months, not years.”

(This story corrects paragraph 1 to say salaries were last revised in 2017. The story was previously refiled to change date to Nov. 19.)

Reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru

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