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Collapse of South African Airways appears imminent

Collapse of South African Airways appears imminent

The end of South African Airways appears to be in sight after plans were revealed to release all employees at the end of April.

According to reports from Bloomberg, some 4,700 staff at the airline will see contracts terminated in just a few days.

The carrier has been on life support for nearly a decade, losing money each year and only sustained by funds from the South African government.

With resources stretched by the coronavirus pandemic, and air travel at a virtual standstill, the situation has become untenable.

South African Airways received its latest bailout earlier this year, but with all international and domestic services currently grounded, the future of the carrier appears bleak.


According to Bloomberg, the carrier is working on severance packages for employees.

Staff will be offered one month of pay, plus one week of pay for every year of service.

However, the ability of the airline to pay this is dependent upon successful sale of assets, including planes, real estate and landing slots.

Bloomberg quoted the South African Department of Public Enterprises: “There are discussions with the unions on alternatives to the current South African Airways business model, success of the business rescue process, and the best possible outcome for the airlines employees.”