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Lynne Brown: Public Enterprises considering merger of SOEs

The Public Enterprises minister told the National Council of Provinces the survival of the state’s smaller airlines also depended on a merger.

FILE: Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN.

PARLIAMENT - Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown says her department is considering the merger of several state-owned enterprises as part of a reform process, but South African Airways (SAA) remains top of the list.

Brown told the National Council of Provinces the survival of the state’s smaller airlines also depended on a merger.

Meanwhile, Parliament’s Finance Committee says it had hoped to see more aviation experience included on the board that was announced by Treasury on Thursday.

Parliament’s Standing Committee on Finance says the real test of the new SAA board members is how they will use their expertise to operate as a collective.

Committee chairperson Yunus Carrim says he thinks SAA’s management also needs to include more people with aviation expertise.

Meanwhile, Brown has reiterated a call for the merger of the state’s three airlines.

“SA Express can’t exist without SAA. It’s only by bringing the two companies together with Mango that the financial basis will be stronger, and because of that there will be greater economies of scale.”

The finance committee says it’s imperative that the new board is allowed to operate without undue political interference.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)