Authorities fear imported cases of Covid-19 would ruin the country’s success in controlling the outbreak.
Malaysia.- Malaysian authorities have decided to keep borders closed after August 31, when current measures to control the Covid-19 pandemic are due to be revised.
Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob said during a press conference that the country was not “ready to relax what is being enforced at the moment.”
He said the measure was to prevent imported cases of Covid-19 entering the country, which has had success controlling the pandemic, currently reporting only single-digit numbers of cases.
Malaysia’s Ministry of Health reported five new cases of the novel coronavirus on Thursday, taking the official rolling tally to around 9,300. The country has reported 125 deaths.
Malaysia’s borders have been closed to foreign nationals since March. They are currently only open for Malaysian nationals who commute to Singapore.
Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Nancy Shukri supported the decision to keep borders closed. She said the measures could be retained into the second quarter of 2021.
Gaming analysts have already forecast that the country’s casino industry will not recover until 2021.
Shukri said: “We initially had a list of countries to be allowed in, but then we saw the second and third waves of coronavirus in some of these countries, and we have to restrategise.”