MIRI, March 30 — While many Sarawakians are rejoicing over the announcement of full reopening of international borders come April 1, the border with Brunei will remain partially shut until April 15.

This was confirmed by Transport Minister Datuk Sri Lee Kim Shin during a visit to Sungai Tujuh Customs, Quarantine and Security (ICQS) complex yesterday.

Miri Hospital director Dr Jack Wong and divisional health officer Dr P Raviwharmman were also present.

“I’ve just been informed by the Brunei Consulate that the Brunei government has not issued any order on the matter and that their border will remain partially shut until April 15,” he said.

Lee said the government was, however, prepared and would not have problem receiving visitors from Brunei as long as they followed the standard operating procedures (SOP) set by the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC).

“At the moment, the Brunei border is not fully open, except to essential services, and those entering must undergo PCR test.

“Those who are Covid-19 positive in the last 90 days will not be required to undergo a PCR test (to enter Brunei) but they must carry with them a letter from the Health Ministry as proof (of Covid-19 infection) to show Brunei officials when required,” he added.

The Brunei government in an official press statement on March 26 said its Covid-19 Steering Committee has extended an Early Endemic Phase under its Covid-19 National Recovery Plan Framework, until April 15.

Lee was at the Sungai Tujuh CIQS with Miri Divisional Disaster Management Committee (MDDMC) members yesterday to see the preparation works being carried out for the reopening of Sarawak-Brunei border on April 1.

He said MDDMC had also identified a bigger location to carry out Covid-19 screening procedures for visitors and foreigners entering Sarawak through the Sungai Tujuh border.

“The CIQS complex has set up two canopies at the entrance, which we will start using on April 1. But I anticipate more visitors after two weeks, and the two canopies won’t be enough.

“We have identified another bigger location right outside the entrance (the parking area of shoplots outside the complex) which is big enough for us to carry out Covid-19 screening in the future,” he said. — Borneo Post Online