SINGAPORE, March 16 — Singapore will continue to stay in touch with Malaysia as it goes under movement control order to see how the situation evolves, the republic’s Minister for Trade and Industry Chan Chun Sing said.

“Our priority is to ensure that our people and our businesses are able to continue with their lives and their livelihoods,” he said in an immediate response after Malaysia declared a two-week movement control order to battle Covid-19 starting Wednesday.

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin tonight declared that Malaysia will be placed under a nationwide restricted movement order from March 18 to March 31, 2020 to combat Covid-19.

The order, the first in the country’s history, was announced by the prime minister in a live broadcast over national television at about 10pm.


A total of 125 new positive cases of Covid-19 have been reported in Malaysia as of noon today, bringing the total to 553 cases.

Chan advised businesses that employ Malaysian workers, who commute between Singapore and Malaysia daily, that they may have to activate their Business Continuity Plans.

Singapore, yesterday, announced new border restrictions on travellers, including those from Asean.


However, it did not include Singapore’s sea and land crossings with Malaysia, meaning Malaysians and Singaporeans can commute from both sides as usual.

Announcing it yesterday, Lawrence Wong, Singapore’s Co-chair of the Multi-Ministry Taskforce on Covid-19, said while the order applies to the whole of Asean, a separate arrangement had been worked out for Malaysia through the bilateral joint working group.

Special considerations have been put in place for Malaysia because of the close proximity and high interdependency between both countries, he said.

“We do need precautions to be taken, given the high volume of people and vehicles moving in and out of these checkpoints,” he was reportedly as saying.

Effective March 16, 2020, as of 11.59pm (Singapore time), all travellers entering Singapore with recent travel history to Asean countries, Japan, Switzerland, or the United Kingdom within the last 14 days, will be issued with a 14-day Stay-Home Notice (SHN). — Bernama