As the rest of the world continues to grapple with the ongoing outbreak of the SARS-COV-2 (COVID-19), several countries in Asia including Malaysia have ordered to close their borders and putting most businesses in lockdown.
Malaysia’s Prime Minister Muhyiddini Yassin announced on Monday a drastic two-week lockdown in the country to slow the spread of the new coronavirus following a sharp spike in the number of cases.
Food Supplies, Goods to Continue Despite Malaysia Lockdown – PM Lee
In line with this, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has received assurance from his Malaysian counterpart that the flow of goods and cargo between Singapore and Malaysia – including food supplies – would continue during Malaysia’s two-week Movement Control Order period, as shared in a report by Yahoo! Singapore.
According to PM Lee, he had discussed the situation with Muhyiddin on the phone and told him that he understood the reasons behind the lockdown to combat the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, and wished Malaysia success in containing the pandemic.
In a Facebook post where he made the announcement, PM Lee shared that he was not surprised at the move, as many other countries around the world have already imposed similar lockdowns.
He added that he was happy to hear Muhyiddin’s reassurance that the flow of goods and cargo between Singapore and Malaysia, including food supplies, would continue.
PM Lee also pointed out that due to the imposed two-week Movement Control Order, Malaysians living in Johor but working in Singapore will have to comply with the Malaysian lockdown. This will prevent them from commuting daily, at least for the time being.
In line with this, PM Lee also noted that they are working out arrangements with Singaporean companies to help Malaysian workers stay in Singapore temporarily if they would like to do so.
Furthermore, both Prime Ministers also agreed to appoint Senior Ministers Teo Chee Hean and Ismail Sabri to coordinate the two countries’ responses to the pandemic, especially on measures in which they can work together or where the actions of one country will affect the other.
PM Lee shared in his post that the two senior ministers are already in touch, but it may take a couple of days for arrangements to be worked out and to settle down.
In line with this update, PM Lee also shared that he is happy to see that, while the queues are longer than usual in Singapore’s supermarkets, people are “taking it in their stride and only buying what they need”.
“We need not worry, as we have prepared for such an eventuality, and have plans in place to cope,” he wrote. “Glad that Singaporeans are calm, united and resilient as we solve the problems at hand.”
On Monday (March 16), Muhyiddin announced a two-week lockdown of Malaysia to slow the spread of the coronavirus, following a sharp spike in the number of cases.
In line with this, all religious institutions, schools, businesses and government offices will also be shut, all mass gatherings will be banned and only essential services including supermarkets, banks, gas stations, and pharmacies will be allowed to remain open.
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