Hishammuddin: Green lane, commuting deal to pilot full reopening of Malaysia-Singapore border

Azril Annuar
·2-min read
Foreign Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein speaks during a press conference at Parliament in Kuala Lumpur July 15, 2020. ― Picture by Miera Zulyana
Foreign Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein speaks during a press conference at Parliament in Kuala Lumpur July 15, 2020. ― Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, July 15 — The Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and the Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) with Singapore will test the feasibility of a full reopening of the shared border amid the Covid-19 pandemic, said Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.

He told reporters in the Parliament building today that the success of the first two steps, which he dubbed as Categories One and Two, would make it easier to negotiate for the next two steps.

“There are two more categories for border crossings between Malaysia and Singapore. The third category allows for Malaysians working in Singapore and vice versa to cross the border. This involves around 200,000 to 255,000 Malaysians and Singaporeans.

“The fourth category will be full border opening. For the final two categories, the Malaysian and Singaporean governments are still in the process of refining the procedures as it is a question of health and security seeing that the Covid-19 pandemic has not ended.

“We need more time. The approval for the last two categories is dependent upon both nations’ capacity to conduct Covid-19 screenings for workers (Category Three) and the success of the RGL and PCA schemes,” he said.

Yesterday, Hishammuddin and Singapore Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan jointly announced the RGL and PCA to address the needs of different groups of cross-border travellers between both countries.

Today, he elaborated that up to 400 individuals a week from each country will be allowed to cross the borders under the RGL.

The PCA will permit Malaysians and Singaporeans with long-term immigration passes to cross the shared border for work.

Currently, the PCA facility is limited to 2,000 individuals per day to cross through Tambak Johor and the Second Link (Link Kedua).

Both schemes are expected to begin on August 10.