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BUKIT KAYU HITAM, Dec 3 — The Home Ministry is concerned over the high number of tourists from China and India who have overstayed in the country, as stated in the 2018 Auditor-General’s Report Series 2, yesterday.
Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, said he had referred the matter to the Malaysian Immigration Department to be scrutinised.
“Some things can be explained . What is important is when tourists do not go back and overstay, the Immigration will want to know where they are.
“Immigration enforcement action will be taken against them, we want to make sure that when a person is in the country, it must be within the period approved by the Immigration Department,” he told reporters after the official handing over of the Bukit Kayu Hitam Immigration, Customs, Quarantine and Security Complex to the ministry here, today.
The audit report said there was no record of exit dates for more than 95 per cent of Chinese and Indian tourists who visited the country between 2016 and last year.
According to the report, during that period, out of 79,799 Chinese tourist arrivals, it was found that 76,258 have no record of exit dates from the country.
However, Immigration director-general Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud said the figures were inaccurate as the actual number of Chinese tourists who have not left was 18,341.
“The difference may be due to the fact that they are using the Electronic Travel Registration & Information (eNTRI) system, a visa-free facility for visitors from China and India.
“Then when they leave the country using the normal system, using a regular social visit pass, there are drawbacks in the technical system, because of that there is a difference,” he said at the same event.
Khairul Dzaimee said they would meet with the National Audit Department in the near future to update the number.
Meanwhile, regarding the Bukit Kayu Hitam ICQS complex, the RM385 million project commenced on June 14, 2014 and was completed on June 25 and fully operational in August.
The complex is equipped with an anti-climb type security fence throughout the area and is assisted by about 300 units of high-definition closed-circuit cameras and cargo scanners mounted on heavy vehicle lanes to ensure thorough inspection of all goods entering the country. — Bernama