Despite China risk, Malaysia will not change Covid rules

Thailand has implemented new blanket Covid-19 restrictions from today in an effort to fight an infection spike without offending China, which just opened to international travel despite a massive coronavirus outbreak. Malaysia went in another direction, declaring that they would make no changes to their entry procedures despite the increased risk of Covid in travellers from China.

The Minister of Home Affairs in Malaysia has stated that, for now, the standard operating procedure for all international points of entry will remain unchanged. Any decisions regarding new Covid protocols in Malaysia will be made based on the latest data, Asian News Today reports.

He also emphasized that the protocols for tourists arriving in Malaysia will be the same for travellers from any country. No special rules or restrictions will be applied only to Chinese tourists. The minister assured that the government will not discriminate against any country in conducting Covid checks on travellers entering Malaysia, as its priority is the health and safety of its citizens.

“Of course, it’s not wise to be selective and I feel it’s not right for us to take that stance.”

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Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim also announced that the Immigration Department has tightened controls at the country’s entry points to monitor the entry of foreigners into Malaysia. But he also was careful to reiterate in his statement on January 4 that no country would be singled out for extra scrutiny.

If a tourist is identified as having a fever, they will be taken to a special area for examination by a doctor on duty. If their body temperature is 37 degrees Celsius or above, they will be placed in a specific area for observation. If they continue to show signs of a possible Covid infection, they will be transported to the Sungai Buloh Hospital for further testing and treatment.

The Minister of Home Affairs reported that he felt that tourists were complying well and without problems with the existing protocols when he recently inspected the Immigration counter at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport.

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Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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