The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has launched its first office in Mexico in an attempt to increase international collaboration.
Due to its failure to meet International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) safety criteria, Mexico’s position was reduced to Category 2 in May 2021, and it has been unable to recover its former ranking.
FAA’s new office in Mexico
Ken Salazar, the US ambassador to Mexico, stated on Friday that the US was pleased to establish an FAA office in Mexico. This office will “intensify the partnership with the government and the aviation industry in Mexico
The aviation sector, Mr. Salazar continued, is essential to strengthening the ties between the two nations. The largest number of flights to and from the United States land in Mexico, which is also where most Americans go when they vacation abroad.
In addition, one in four Americans who traveled overseas, or around 13 million people in 2022, arrived in Mexico. The announcement was welcomed by the Mexican airline sector. The ultra-low-cost airline Viva Aerobus issued a statement praising the inauguration of the FAA’s first office in Mexico.
Chief Executive Officer of Viva Aerobus Juan Carlos Zuazua said,
We congratulate the FAA for opening an office in Mexico because we believe it will help with the efforts and initiatives required to keep the region’s air operations safer, more competitive, and more efficient.
On the path to regaining Category 1 status and bringing the US and Mexico even closer together, it is without a doubt a very timely move.
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Mexican civil aviation authorities
However, the pending Category 1 recertification by the Mexican civil aviation authorities was not mentioned by the US Ambassador in Mexico.
The FAA downgraded Mexico to Category 2 in May 2021. The Mexican government, according to the US agency, did not adhere to ICAO safety guidelines.
Federal aviation administration
The FAA dropped Mexico to Category 2 almost two years ago. With this grade, Mexico has joined nations like Bangladesh, Pakistan, Russia, Thailand, and Venezuela.
The Mexican government has often indicated that it is attempting to restore Category 1 status. After all, failing to do so has a significant negative influence on the expansion plans of regional airlines like Aeromexico, Volaris, and Viva Aerobus as well as the pet project of the present administration, the Felipe N. Gómez International Airport (NLU).
The FAA’s Notice to Air Missions (NOTAM) system failure earlier this month caused a delay in the recertification procedure. In order to continue working to regain the Category 1 designation, the FAA officials asked the Mexican authorities to postpone a high-level conference between both organizations.
The meeting, which was scheduled for January 12th, has been postponed until a future date that has not yet been revealed. Mexico anticipates regaining Category 1 status this year, most likely in the second quarter, though recent events may cause this date to slip further into the future.
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