Reciprocal Vaccine Cert That Will Facilitate Cross-Border Travels In The Works Between Singapore And Malaysia
On Tuesday (23 Mar), Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan met up with Malaysian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein in Malaysia.
After discussions, they issued a joint statement that both countries will work on a Reciprocal Recognition of Vaccine Certificate that will help restore cross-border travels.
Details of reciprocal vaccine cert to be confirmed
In a joint statement on Tuesday (23 Mar), the ministers revealed that a Reciprocal Recognition of Vaccine Certificate that will help facilitate travels between Singapore and Malaysia is in the works.
The operational details of the reciprocal vaccine cert include detailed requirements, health protocols, and application process for entry and exit into Singapore and Malaysia.
According to Bloomberg, both countries will continue to deliberate on the matters and details will be finalised at a later date.
S’pore and M’sia to progressively open up travels
Currently, only those travelling for work can cross the Causeway between Singapore and Malaysia via the Reciprocal Green Lane and the Periodic Commuting Arrangement.
The 2 ministers discussed progressively opening cross-border travels to more groups of people, reported The Straits Times (ST).
One such example is compassionate travel that will be allowed in the months to come.
Both ministers vowed that this will be done with caution, taking into account the Covid-19 situation in both countries, reports Channel NewsAsia (CNA).
Additionally, Singapore and Malaysia promised to continue making headway in their national vaccine programmes.
This includes the inoculation of Malaysians living in Singapore and likewise Singaporeans living in Malaysia.
Ministers reaffirm bilateral ties
Besides that, Dr Balakrishnan and his Malaysian counterpart also reaffirmed the bilateral ties between both countries.
According to ST, the ministers emphasised that it is important to strengthen these relations to overcome challenges brought about by Covid-19.
In a Facebook post, Dr Balakrishnan shared that he is “delighted” to be back in Malaysia after more than a year.
He said that although he has kept in contact with Mr Hishammuddin, there is nothing quite like meeting his counterpart in person.
The two last met back in July on the Causeway to discuss cross-border travels.
Dr Balakrishnan is currently on a 2-day trip to Malaysia and is expected to meet Malaysia Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.
Continue to do our part to keep Covid-19 at bay
Hopefully, as discussions progress between Singapore and Malaysia, travelling across the Causeway will once again be possible again.
But it is important to remember that this is conditioned upon both countries keeping their Covid-19 situations under control.
While adhering to safe distancing measures is important to keep Covid-19 at bay, we can also help by getting our vaccines when they become available to us.
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Featured image adapted from Facebook.