South African Airways (SAA) is in separate talks with both Emirates and Etihad Airways regarding a a potential partnership to help revive the struggling African carrier, according to UAE's ambassador to South Africa, Mahash Alhameli.

SAA Chief Executive Officer Vuyani Jarana continues to push for an outside investor in the airline, as the company hasn't been profitable since 2011. A partner would be expected to inject capital into SAA and share costs, among other initiatives.

The potential deal could follow a recent UAE pledge to invest up to US$10 billion in the economy of South Africa.

SAA and Etihad dropped their previous codeshare agreement in 2016.