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US codeshare flights may be at risk: Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines' codeshare flights to the United States could be affected by the US Federal Aviation Administration downgrading its safety rating to Category 2

The carrier notes that while Malaysian operators can maintain their services and codeshares at existing levels, its codeshares with Oneworld alliance partners to the US may be affected, subject to the assessment or consideration made by these airlines.

"This may or may not affect Malaysia Airlines’ existing codeshares to [and] from the USA with several partner airlines, subject to the respective airline’s own assessment [or] consideration," says the Kuala Lumpur-based operator.

The airline does not operate any flights to the US and flies its passengers through its Oneworld partners.

Cirium schedules data shows that Malaysia Airlines codeshares with American Airlines on flights to and within the US via Asia and Europe. Cathay Pacific, Japan Airlines and Qatar Airways all serve as hubs for codeshared flights to the US.

Together with airlines within its parent Malaysia Aviation Group, Malaysia Airlines says it will extend full support to the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia (CAAM) to regain the Category 1 rating. It also stressed that it maintains the highest safety standards, having secured the IATA Operational Safety Audit and been consistently recertified since 2005.

The FAA says: “[The CAAM] is deficient in one or more areas, such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record-keeping, and/or inspection procedures.”

CAAM has held the Category 1 rating since 2003 and the recent downgrade by the FAA follows an audit in April. Other countries in Category 2 include Bangladesh, Thailand and Ghana.

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