The government, according to Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan, will ensure that the Takatso consortium provides the necessary funds as soon as the two conclude their partnership, which will result in the consortium owning 51% of SAA.
Gordhan stated, “All of those issues and concerns might not exist and will be dealt with in the process once we go past the stage of the matter where the competition tribunal is involved.”
He was responding to questions posed by DA MP Alf Lees, who cited a spokesperson for Harith General Partners as stating that Takatso Aviation has not sourced the R3 billion in working capital that the airline is required to provide in accordance with its sale agreement.
“Since the Opposition Commission’s proposals, the minority investors won’t go effectively when they go to the court, and there are ideas that the state could need to get them out. Is this something that is being considered to make the arrangement go through? And what sort of value are we focusing on? Lees asked.
He guaranteed that the 20% of the 51% to the minority investors was sold for R8,16 (eight rand 16 pennies) however the worth of the carrier after liabilities have been cleared was anyplace somewhere in the range of R3bn and R10bn, contingent upon who you are conversing with.
“Taking everything into account, we have the affirmation that the cash will be there that will empower the carrier to spread its wings, get more airplanes either through renting or different systems, take on additional courses, give more contest to the people who have topped off the vacuum while SAA, SA Express and Mango were not traveling to specific courses and deciding by the crazy passages in the process too,” said Gordhan.
While he said the R8,16 was “totally deceptive” he didn’t say how much the stake was sold for.
Takatso is responsible for handling this matter. Their 20 percent stake in Takatso has nothing to do with the state. Therefore, either paying them off or buying them off is out of the question. Let me be very clear about that.
“This is a matter between two individuals or substances that showed up at some plan and they will figure out their quarrels.”
According to Gordhan, Takatso and the minorities should handle the matter, and the Competition Commission has mandated that the minorities divest.
The minority shareholders of Takatso Aviation, which received regulatory approval earlier this month to acquire a 51% stake in SAA, claim that they have not agreed to divest from the consortium, as required by the Competition Commission for the deal to be approved by the Competition Tribunal.
Harith General Partners holds a majority stake in Takatso, while Global Aviation Operations and Syranix hold minority stakes.
Acting DG Jacky Molisane added that the cash from Takatso can come once the arrangement has been settled and not while it is as yet going through the administrative endorsements.
In the meantime, the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) announced that it was getting ready to look into complaints regarding the Takatso deal. The SIU said the claims basically had to do with impedance in the authoritative cycle in the division of public ventures in choosing the organization that was granted the arrangement.