Sunday, March 17, 2013

■ SOUTH AFRICA: fastjet in talks with local South African partner to bypass 25% foreign ownership cap in 1Time.

fastjetFollowing on from our last report, LCC fastjet (FN) is now reportedly in negotiations with a "credible local South African partner" to aide in its protracted battle to acquire control of bankrupt South African carrier, 1Time (T6). This comes after an outcry from the local airline community including South African Airways and Comair Ltd, forced fastjet to rethink its strategy to acquire 1Time, which until now, has been blocked by South African law.

fastjet A320
fastjet A320 (fastjet)
The Chairman and Chief Executive of fastjet plc, were in South Africa last week to meet with 1Time's Provisional Liquidator and the authorities to continue discussions regarding the potential re-launch of 1Time.

Should talks succeed, it would provide fastjet with an investment vehicle that negates the need for it to be exempted from a South African law capping foreign ownership of airlines at 25%, and which forced fastjet to seek an exemption from Minister of Transport, Ben Martins.
We have submitted an amendment to our application to the Department of Transport with respect to the two licences, which are the International Air Services Licence and the air service licence for the domestic operations," said FastJet’s attorney Aviwe Ndyamara.
Source [BusinessDayLive]

The South African Air Service Licensing Council typically meets once a month.

Additionally, talks were held with the South African Civil Aviation Authority and the DoT Aviation regarding the possible start of Fly540 Tanzania's planned daily flights from Dar es Salaam to Johannesburg.