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DPE asks for patience with SAA debacle

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South African Airways (SAA) employees and creditors have been asked to be patient as the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) look for a constructive solution to the challenges the airline faces.

“The department is aware of a creditors meeting called to discuss the future of the business rescue plan for South African Airways and protests scheduled to be held outside the airline’s offices on Friday. Efforts to locate funding sources continue.

“The DPE remains sympathetic and deeply mindful of the plight of SAA employees,” the department said in a statement on Thursday.

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When mapping the way forward, the department believes that the biggest problems the carrier faces right now is finalising and executing the business rescue process, restructuring the airline, finding a new board and executive team, and finding a reliable strategic equity partner who can introduce the required technical, financial, and operational expertise into the business.

The statement continues by saying that government is working alongside transaction advisors to look into proposals from several potential strategic equity partners for the airline.

“The department recognises the interests of workers’ and creditors.”

Administrators of the airline invited creditors to Friday’s meeting after government missed the deadline to make funding available for the airline’s restructuring plan.

SAA was placed under business rescue in December 2019.

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