The government of South Africa seems to have given up on its national carrier, South African Airways (SAA), seeing that it has denied the airline any further bailout. The government argues that resources are now being directed toward lessening the negative economic impact of COVID-19 on its citizens and businesses.
South African Airways was placed under business rescue in December last year, with its business administrators requesting an additional 10 billion rand (S$777.6 million) in funds toward the rescue plan.
However, the state has now asked the airline to source funding from their available resources, with the minister of public enterprises, Pravin Gordhan, reiterating, “government is unable to provide additional funding to sustain the business rescue process beyond the funding they already gave the airline.”
Already, the airline received 3.5 billion rands ($190.7 million) from the Development Bank of South Africa in January.
Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, SAA has grounded all of its passenger flights, apart from charters to repatriate stranded citizens, which are further crippling the ailing carrier.
South African Airways is the state-owned flag carrier of South Africa. Its headquarters are in Airways Park at O.R Tambo International Airport. The airline links over 40 local and international destinations across Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, South America, and Oceania. Its base is at Johannesburg International Airport.
The airline has been on the brink of collapse, struggling to make profits and majorly relying on government bailouts to survive.