KUALA LUMPUR, March 17 — Malindo Air will temporarily suspend all its international operations from March 18 to March 31, 2020.

In a statement today, the airline said the decision had been made in anticipation of the reduced capacity as a result of the nationwide movement control order announced by the government yesterday.

The order which comes into effect tomorrow bars Malaysians from leaving the country and places restrictions on the entry of all tourists and foreign visitors into Malaysia.

However, during this period, Malindo Air said that it will continue to provide critical connectivity by operating domestic flights between Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu; Kuala Lumpur and Kuching; Kuala Lumpur and Penang; and Kuala Lumpur and Langkawi.

“Although we are an essential services provider, we fully support the government’s move to restrict movement of people so as to be able to contain the pandemic,” CEO of Malindo Air, Capt Mushafiz Bin Mustafa Bakri, said in the statement.

“The drastic cuts to our regular flying schedules are regrettably unavoidable.”

Passengers who have booked for travel between 18 and 31 March will be given an option to move their travel date within the 12 months at no cost subject to seats availability.

Malindo Air said that it will continue to monitor the situation.

The announcement comes as the Indian authorities barred all Malaysian carriers from today until 31 March.