Travel schemes with Singapore to continue under Malaysia's movement curbs, says KL minister

The Periodic Commuting Arrangement scheme was expanded to Malaysians who are Singapore permanent residents on Jan 11, 2021.
The Periodic Commuting Arrangement scheme was expanded to Malaysians who are Singapore permanent residents on Jan 11, 2021.PHOTO: ST FILE

PUTRAJAYA (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - The Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) travel schemes will continue despite movement curbs in Malaysia, said Senior Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob on Tuesday (Jan 12).

He said both travel schemes are the result of bilateral cooperation between the governments of Malaysia and Singapore.

"The PCA and RGL will continue as usual," he said.

Malaysia and Singapore have agreed to implement the PCA between both countries, which started on Aug 10.

Under the PCA, approved travellers must have stayed in their country of employment for at least 90 days before returning to their home country for short-term home leave.

When they return to Singapore, they will serve a 14-day stay-home notice at a dedicated facility before taking a Covid-19 test.

Previously, workers had to be sponsored by their employers to qualify for the PCA scheme - with a daily quota of 2,000 travellers.

However from Monday (Jan 11), the scheme was expanded to Malaysians who are Singapore permanent residents.

The PCA is one of two special bilateral travel arrangements, with the other being the RGL, which allows for short-term travel of up to 14 days.

The RGL applies only to essential business or official travellers, and requires a much stricter, controlled itinerary.

For instance, these travellers cannot use public transport except for private-hire cars and taxis, unlike those under the PCA.

Before the pandemic, more than 300,000 travellers used the Causeway every day. Among them were about 100,000 Malaysians who commuted daily between Singapore and Malaysia.

The coronavirus situation in Malaysia has shown signs of worsening lately, with the authorities reporting 3,309 new coronavirus cases - a daily high - on Tuesday.

Last November, Singapore required all travellers with recent travel history to Malaysia to serve a 14-day stay-home notice at dedicated facilities upon arrival here, up from the previous requirement of a seven-day stay-home notice at their place of residence.