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Dominic Majola | 26 February

File: State-owned enterprise, Acsa, said the changes to its jet fueling operations went back as far as 2020 and would benefit black-owned fuel suppliers and were motivated by South Africa's increasing reliance on imported fuel. Picture: ACSA

JOHANNESBURG - The Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) has denied that it is guilty of sanction-busting by changing its fuel changing operations.

It was responding to reports that claimed its recent operational changes pertaining to the re-fuelling of aircraft was aimed at bypassing the sanctions imposed by Western governments on Russian aircraft since the outbreak of hostilities between Russia and Ukraine over a year ago.

"The company rejects any suggestion that the move is a direct response to two incidents last year where oil companies refused to refuel Russian aircraft at O.R Tambo International Airport and Cape Town International Airport," it said.

Rather, these plans dated back to 2020, and were approved in 2021, to be implemented next year.

The changes were motivated by dwindling jet fuel refining capacity within South Africa and the country's increased dependence on imported fuel, among others.

"Jet fuel suppliers currently lease airport fuel storage and hydrant facilities from Acsa, while using their own equipment and vehicles to transport and pump fuel into planes. Under the current agreement with Acsa, oil companies can manage the fuel facilities and operations directly.

"Under the current Jet Fuel arrangement, the supply of aviation fuel is not handled by Acsa. The company issues licences to all major oil companies so they can supply jet fuel to refuel aircraft on their platforms. Aside from major fuel suppliers, ACSA has issued licences to several local Black economically empowered fuel suppliers as part of its efforts to drive transformation in the local industry."

‘Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER’.


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