A spokeswoman for the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore, or CAAS, said the regulator has not imposed any restrictions on the Indian carriers, which include Jet Airways Ltd., IndiGo and government-owned Air India.
But she did say the CAAS is considering 'appropriate measures to address any significant safety risks," keeping in mind that the 'safety of air transport operations, passengers and the public is paramount."
A spokesperson for Air India didn't respond to calls from The Wall Street Journal. Jet Airways and IndiGo did not respond to separate emails seeking comment.
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, or FAA, downgraded India's aviation-safety ranking to Category 2 from Category 1 on Jan. 31, citing inadequate oversight by local regulators.
The decision comes after months of warnings by U.S. officials and despite last-minute efforts by the Indian government to beef up its force of inspectors.– It is an unusual public rebuke that effectively bars India's fast-growing airline industry from increasing service to American cities and could serve as a potentially significant economic setback for the country's airline business.
Air traffic has grown in India by more than 50% since 2009, which was also when the FAA first raised concerns about India's aviation safety, according to a study published by CAPA - Centre for Aviation on Tuesday.
Following last week's downgrade, India's civil aviation minister Ajit Singh said the decision was "surprising and disappointing" and claimed that the nation has already "addressed almost 95% of the concerns raised by the FAA."
He said India is hiring 75 additional full-time safety inspectors and expected the country to be able to–address the remaining concerns from the FAA by March.
According to the CAPA report, India's Directorate General of Civil Aviation has recruited just 67 full-time employees to its workforce of 400 since 2009, when it estimated that nearly 530 more staff were needed–to adequately oversee aviation safety.
"A serious shortage of skilled resources is actually getting worse,' the CAPA study says.
In downgrading India, the FAA has put it in the company of just a handful other countries that include Indonesia, the Philippines and Ghana – all countries with a history of fatal air accidents in recent years.
Indian aircraft have not been involved in fatal crashes in the past few years, but there have been a series of dangerous or embarrassing incidents involving local carriers in recent months.
The FAA downgrade is unlikely to affect the right of existing Indian carriers Air India and Jet Airways to fly to the U.S, according to analysts. However, those airlines could face enhanced scrutiny at U.S. airports from FAA inspectors, and won't be able to add new flights to the country.
In Singapore, the CAAS has a surveillance program for all foreign carriers and can suspend or revoke flying permits of airlines it considers unsafe. Safety information and audits conducted by other aviation authorities are also taken into consideration during the authority's safety assessments.
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