KUALA LUMPUR NOV.29: The reopening of Malaysia-Singapore borders through the launching of land Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) and VTL-Air today is part of the gradual reopening of borders to facilitate travels between the two countries.
Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Ismal Sabri Yaakob said, he has discussed with Prime Minister of Singapore, Lee Hsien Loong on additional measures that both countries have to undertake in respect of cross border travels between Malaysia and Singapore.
“Both of us have agreed to include all categories of travellers for the VTL Land, subject to the health requirements determined by both countries; and to expand VTL-land to include additional bus service routes through the Second Link, trains operated by Keretapi Tanah Melayu (KTM), and gradually personal vehicles such as motorbikes and cars.
“We acknowledge that the re-opening of borders is important to reactivate cross-border social and economic activities that will benefit the people of both countries.
“We hope by doing this, it would provide the opportunity for more people on both sides of the Causeway who have been away from their families due to the COVID-19 pandemic, to be re-united with their loved ones – which we know the people from Malaysia and Singapore have long awaited for,” said Prime Minister Ismail at a Joint Press Conference in Singapore today.
Ismail added, PM Lee and he have also discussed the cross border movement by air between Singapore and destinations like Pulau Pinang, Langkawi, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu in Malaysia.
“Both of us decided that our officials should start to draw up measures for this purpose. Both of us agreed on the need to resume the work of our existing bilateral mechanisms. This includes the 10th Annual Leaders’ Retreat, which we have not been able to convene during the past two years due to the pandemic.
“InsyaAllah, we will have our Leaders’ Retreat in the first quarter of next year and I look forward to coming back to Singapore,” Ismail said.
According to PM Ismail, both of them have agreed that the other mechanisms at the ministerial and at the official levels should resume their work as soon as possible. This is important to ensure that the multifaceted cooperation and outstanding issues are kept on the right track with a positive momentum forward.
On regional development, PM Ismail added, both of them have touched on the situation in Myanmar and agreed that it is crucial for ASEAN to continue playing a positive and constructive role in facilitating a durable and peaceful solution in the interest of Myanmar and in the larger interest of the ASEAN Community.
“We share the same view that it is crucial for Myanmar to cooperate in the implementation of the Five-Point Consensus, and the necessity to preserve the credibility and integrity of ASEAN.
We look forward to the return of democracy in Myanmar and the participation of Myanmar at the highest level at future Summits,” PM Ismail said.
Earlier PM Ismail expressed his happiness to visit Singapore and renew face to-face contact with PM Lee and other colleagues.
Prime Minister Ismail said, he had the honour to call on Madam Halimah Yacob, President of Singapore and then meeting with PM Lee.
“As close and immediate neighbours, deep relation between Malaysia and Singapore is an immense importance to both sides. More active multi-level engagements and much stronger cooperation is certainly the way forward for our two countries,” he said.-Malaysia World News