Malaysia is looking to fully reopen its border with Singapore in January, said Malaysian Health Minister Adham Baba on Friday (11 September), according to a report by The Star.
The recovery movement control order period over the next four months would be an important time for Malaysia as it would determine the possibility of fully reopening the border with Singapore, Dr Adham said.
A more systematic approach is required in areas such as border control and physical distancing, the minister said. “We cannot use a trial-and-error approach,” he added, according to the report.
The decision whether to reopen the border would have to consider people's livelihood, which had been hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr Adham said.
“We must find a balance as both the economy and health are very important matters,” he said at an event to pay tribute to frontliners in Johor Bahru.
He added that his ministry was looking at doubling its capacity to do swab tests for travellers under the Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) schemes.
Speaking at the same event, Johor Chief Minister Hasni Mohammad said the state government would continue to push the federal government to open up the border with Singapore as soon as possible.
“Johor wants the border to be fully open for daily commuters and not just with the RGL and PCA Prior to RGL and PCA, there was already movement between the two countries, with Malaysia sending cargo containing medical and food supplies,” he said.
As of 31 August, 320 individuals had travelled to and from Singapore under RGL and another 8,270 under the PCA, according to Hasni.
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