The government remained confident that South African Airways (SAA) could return to profitability, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa said in Parliament on Wednesday. Responding to questions in the National Council of Provinces, he said there were players in the industry who saw investment value in the carrier. The national airline is among state-owned entities in turmoil — including the SABC and Eskom — with some of them requiring urgent government bail-outs. The Treasury has agreed to grant SAA, which faces a cash crunch, a special appropriation of R10bn. Credit ratings agencies have flagged failure of state-owned entities as a serious risk to the country’s fiscal outlook. In his medium-term budget policy statement last week, Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba said that the recapitalisation of SAA and the South African Post Office put the ceiling at risk of a R3.9bn breach. Ramaphosa said that the government had little choice but to bail out the national airline, but was confident that t...

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