JOHANNESBURG, May 14 (Reuters) - South African Airways (SAA) aims to resume flights in July or August, but the restart date will depend on how the COVID-19 pandemic progresses and whether the airline can resolve a pilot dispute, its chief executive said on Friday.
State-owned SAA, which was put into administration in December 2019, has not flown commercially since September, when its administrators mothballed all operations pending funding for a restructuring. airline exited administration in late April after receiving 7.8 billion rand ($550 million) from the government, but at the time it did not say when it would take to the skies again. a draft or as a proposal we are looking at July-August 2021," SAA's Chief Executive Thomas Kgokolo said during a presentation to a parliamentary committee.
"However these dates come with some complexities, the issue of the COVID-19 is something that we still need to consider ... and there is a complex matter that we are dealing with of pilots as well," he added.
Kgokolo said SAA would meet again with its pilots on Friday to try to find a solution to a disagreement over outstanding salaries and layoff terms.
The airline has been trying to reach a settlement with the pilots for months.
SAA is one of a handful of South African state companies reliant on government bailouts, placing the country's budget under strain at a time of rapidly rising debt. ($1 = 14.1657 rand)
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