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    Competition Tribunal commences hearing on SAA-Takatso merger

    The Competition Tribunal in Pretoria today initiated a two-day hearing on the merger between Takatso Aviation Consortium and South African Airways (SAA).
    Source: SAA/
    Source: SAA/Tourism Update

    In May, the Competition Commission recommended the tribunal's approval for the 51% transfer of SAA shares to Takatso, subject to specified conditions being fulfilled.

    Under the agreement, Takatso would secure a 51% share of SAA and commit a two-year capital injection of R3bn, while the state retains 49%.

    Lift Airline, jointly owned by Global Aviation and Syanic, holds a 20% stake in Takatso.

    One of the conditions of the transfer of SAA shares to Takatso entails excluding minority partners (Global Aviation and Syranix) from the consortium to prevent a reduction in competition within the domestic airline market.

    Concerns arise regarding their access to "competitively sensitive" data if they maintain their stake.

    The second aspect of the agreement involves implementing a "moratorium on retrenchments related to the merger" and ensuring a minimum staff level is maintained at SAA.

    After being grounded for financial reasons, SAA aircraft returned to the skies two years ago, marking a significant milestone in their operational revival.

    The airline has recorded a historic operating profit for the first time since then.

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