M’sia Reportedly Reopening Its Borders in Nov & S’pore Could be the ‘First’


As we continue to progress with the COVID-19 pandemic, more and more countries are opening up their borders just like Singapore with the establishment of the Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTLs) to countries that have a low risk of COVID-19 transmission.

According to CNBCMalaysia is looking to reopen its borders soon to allow international tourists to visit the country.

How soon?

As soon as November. 

And guess what?

It seems like Singapore could be one of the first countries to be extended this courtesy to enter the country.

M’sia Reportedly Reopening Its Borders in Nov & S’pore Could be the ‘First’

Malaysia’s Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Nancy Shukri, shared that she will be meeting Singapore officials to talk in more detail about resuming cross-border travel between the two neighbouring countries next week, and she is quite confident that cross-border travel will resume by November.

While the Singapore government hasn’t made any comments regarding this meeting, we do know that Singapore categorises countries and regions by the risk of COVID-19 transmission, and determines the border measures based on this risk.

As of now, Malaysia is categorised under category IV, which is for countries that are considered to have the highest transmission risk.

This is also due to the fact that Malaysia has experienced a sharp increase in COVID-19 infections this year, with their daily numbers hitting more than 24,000. Thankfully, as more citizens got vaccinated over the year, the number of positive cases has also decreased drastically in the last few weeks.

Malaysia’s Current Border Measures

The current situation is such that only Malaysian citizens working in Singapore, and Singapore citizens working in Malaysia can travel between the two countries.

\This is done under a bilateral arrangement called the Periodic Commuting Arrangement, which is only granted to an individual when they meet the proposed requirements.

Malaysian citizens, those possessing diplomatic passports, and those who have got permission from immigration authorities are also allowed to enter Malaysia.

However, those who are fully vaccinated would have to be quarantined for seven days upon arrival, while those who are partially or not vaccinated would have to be quarantined for 10 days.

Malaysia’s Plan to Move Forward

Seeing that many countries are starting to ease their border restrictions, Ms Shukri said that she also hopes that Malaysia can do the same.

She said, “We are observing what other countries are doing and see where we can fit in, try to make sure that we are not left behind.”


Of course, this doesn’t mean that Malaysia’s citizens should let their guard down and resume all normal activities. Ms Shukri urges everyone to still remain cautious as the pandemic is still ongoing. She also revealed that the Malaysian authorities are in the midst of planning a new set of measures including quarantine rules so that the reopening of borders can be done smoothly.

In her plan, Ms Shukri also added that she has proposed for the island resort of Langkawi to open its borders to fully vaccinated international visitors, hopefully by next month. This is a step-up from the current situation where only vaccinated domestic visitors are allowed into the island resort.

However, she is still awaiting the approval of the Government for this reopening.

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