The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that the Republic of the Philippines complies with international safety standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and has been granted a Category 1 rating.
The country previously held a Category 1 rating until January 2008, when it was downgraded to a Category 2. A Category 2 rating means a country either lacks laws or regulations necessary to oversee air carriers in accordance with minimum international standards, or that its civil aviation authority is deficient in one or more areas, such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record keeping or inspection procedures.
The return to Category 1 status is based on a March 2014 FAA review of the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines. A Category 1 rating means the country’s civil aviation authority complies with ICAO standards. With the International Aviation Safety Assessment (IASA) Category 1 rating, the Republic of the Philippines’ air carriers can add flights and service to the United States and carry the code of U.S. carriers.
As part of the FAA’s IASA program, the agency assesses the civil aviation authorities of all countries with air carriers that have applied to fly to the United States, currently conduct operations to the United States or participate in code sharing arrangements with U.S. partner airlines and makes that information available to the public. The assessments determine whether or not foreign civil aviation authorities are meeting ICAO safety standards, not FAA regulations.
In order to maintain a Category 1 rating, a country must adhere to the safety standards of ICAO.
Results of a February 2013 ICAO audit progress report show an above-world average effective implementation score in the fields of Legislation (86% vs 67%) Organization (85% vs 64%), Licensing (82% vs 71%), Operations (83% vs 66%) and Airworthiness (88% vs 73%). The results for other categories show a below-world average effective implementation score: Accident investigation (44% vs 54%), Air Navigation Services (35% vs 55%) and Aerodrome (38% vs 58%).