KUALA LUMPUR, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- Malaysia has set up a task force to review and regain its aviation safety rating after being downgraded by the U.S. regulators, the government said Monday.
The Transport Ministry said in a statement Monday that it had formed a task force for the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) corrective measures to oversee the efforts by Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia's (CAAM) to regain its Category 1 status.
According to the statement, the task force consists of four pilots, three engineers and one technical coordinator, including international experts.
"With the objective of regaining Category 1 status, the task force will be reporting to the Minister of Transport and the authority members of CAAM on the progress of resolving all the assessment findings by FAA," it said.
The FAA would be invited to conduct a re-assessment of the IASA program with the objective of re-categorizing CAAM from Category 2 to Category 1, it added.
FAA cut CAAM listing to Category 2 Aviation Regulator, after a review of its legislation, oversight, delegation of authority as well as adequacy of the number of technical personnel employed that was carried out in April.
The U.S. regulator also barred new routes from Malaysia's carrier to the United States following the rating downgrade.
Maybank Investment Bank said in its recent report that the longer term impact from the downgrade would be far-reaching.
Some of the possible impacts include the public perception of the safety of Malaysia's carriers turning negative; Malaysian pilots and engineers being not employable outside Malaysia; a loss of maintenance, repair, and operating supply (MRO) business; higher insurance premiums; and increased aircraft leasing rates.
"This is the first time in Malaysia's history that it has been dropped from the top-tier safety status. This could potentially cause a knock-on effect as other regional aviation administrators might take heed of the FAA revised rating and decide to impose restrictions on Malaysian carriers as well," said the research house.