Mexico has recovered its Category 1 air space status from the US Federal Aviation Administration, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said, meaning it has improved its aviation-safety oversight.
(Bloomberg) — Mexico has recovered its Category 1 air space status from the US Federal Aviation Administration, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said, meaning it has improved its aviation-safety oversight.
“All the requirements were met and for that reason they decided to give back to Mexico’s airport that category,” AMLO, as the president is known, told reporters at his morning press briefing Friday. “This is also a sign that relations are very good.”
He said US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg informed Mexico’s Foreign Affairs Minister Alicia Barcena on Thursday that the country will have its status reinstated. The official announcement is expected next week, AMLO added.
“We continue to provide assistance to Mexico’s civil aviation authority. We expect to conclude the process in the near future,” the FAA said later Friday in a statement.
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The move comes after two years of audits by the US regulator into the the country’s safety standards. The FAA lowered Mexico’s rating in May 2021.
Under the Category 2 rating, Mexican carriers had been unable to add new routes to the US. In April, Mexico’s Congress passed a law that modified the structure of the aviation authority, AFAC, which was one of the requirements for the country to recover its rating.
The FAA audits look at whether nations have adequate aviation regulations and the ability to enforce them. The standards are set by the International Civil Aviation Organization, an arm of the United Nations. The country was also downgraded by the FAA in 2010, but was reinstated within several months.
US-traded shares of low cost airline Volaris, also known as Controladora Vuela Cia de Aviacion SAB, rose 3.19% after AMLO’s announcement.
–With assistance from Amy Stillman and Keith Laing.
(Updates with FAA statement in fourth paragraph.)
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