Malaysian Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin posted on Twitter that the health ministers of Malaysia and Singapore agreed to cooperate on fully resuming travel between the two nations now that the pandemic situation has stabilised.
According to Khairy, the two ministers agreed to work immediately to enable the full resumption of air and land travel for fully vaccinated people. In an earlier tweet, Khairy claimed he met with his counterpart Ong Ye Kung to discuss arrangements for the border reopening.
After two years of limitations to contain Covid, which is now moving into the endemic phase of the outbreak, Malaysia is preparing to reopen its borders to fully vaccinated travellers on April 1. In November, Malaysia and Singapore agreed on a quota system for air and ground travel between the two countries. Flights between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur were the first to be introduced, followed by flights to Penang last week.
Singapore is likewise preparing to open its borders to fully vaccinated travellers sooner rather than later, according to the country’s Transport Minister S. Iswaran. Currently, the island city’s vaccinated travel lane programme permits inoculated travellers from 32 nations and territories to arrive without having to quarantine.
Ong also turned to social media on Wednesday to highlight his meeting with Khairy, describing their conversation as “fruitful and frank.”
According to the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture Malaysia, Singapore was Malaysia’s most popular tourist destination in 2019, with 10 million visitors. In 2020, the number of visitors declined to 1.5 million, mostly due to attendance in the first few months of the year before the lockdowns. Singaporeans spend the most money in Malaysia, spending approximately 20.5 billion ringgit ($4.9 billion) in 2019.