The FAA has downgraded Malaysia's civil aviation authority to a Category 2 rating for failing to meet safety standards set by the United Nations' International Civil Aviation Organization.

As a result, Malaysian airlines won't be allowed to launch new U.S. routes. 

The move doesn't figure to have substantial effect on travel between the U.S. and Malaysia. AirAsia X's Kuala Lumpur-Osaka-Honolulu service is the only U.S. route operated by a Malaysian carrier. That route can be continued despite the downgrade.

AirAsia X has expressed an interest in flying to the U.S. West Coast, but those ambitions will now have to be put on hold. Oneworld alliance member Malaysia Airlines doesn't fly to the U.S. 

The Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia had enjoyed a Category 1 rating from the FAA since 2003. The downgrade follows an in-country reassessment conducted by the FAA in April. The FAA didn't state the specific reason for the downgrade.

Generally, a Category 2 rating means that that the country lacks laws or regulations necessary to oversee airlines or its civil aviation authority is deficient in one or more areas, such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record-keeping or inspection procedures.

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