Malaysia will continue to negotiate with Singapore on border opening: Foreign Minister Saifuddin

He also pointed out that the negotiations included cross-border business programs such as the Daily Commuting Arrangement (DCA).

The DCA system was previously proposed by the Johor State Government. In a interview with CNA In November 2020, Johor’s Prime Minister Hasni Mohammad said the proposed system would facilitate the movement of up to 30,000 commuters every day across the two ground control points between Singapore and Malaysia.

To facilitate this, he said that the state government, for example, would issue travel passports every ten days, and commuters could use the passports to travel across the border for about three times within that period.

Benut State Assemblyman explained that this system will be useful for both students and Malaysians who are employed in Singapore and who need to commute back and forth every day.

In his speech, Saifuddin said that DCA was still in the “proposal stage” and that “many things still needed to be improved before it could be implemented”.

He added that for all border reopening proposals, the most important issue was to take into account the issue of “human health and safety, in addition to the current COVID-19 situation in both Malaysia and Singapore”.

In his speech, Saifuddin also said he was aware that the prolonged border closures between Singapore and Malaysia affect many Malaysians who have been separated from their loved ones throughout the pandemic.

However, he noted that these Malaysians working in Singapore can use systems such as Periodic Commuting (PCA) to return home for leave to meet his family and resolve private matters.

The PCA allows citizens of Singapore or Malaysia or permanent residents (PR) who hold long-term immigration cards for business and work purposes in the other country to enter that country for work.

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