Green lane and commuting arrangement to be set up between Singapore and Malaysia; govts to allow certain residents to return for short-term leave


  • Singapore
  • Saturday, 27 Jun 2020

The Reciprocal Green Lane will facilitate cross-border travel for essential business and official purposes between both countries. - The Straits Times/ANN

SINGAPORE (The Straits Times/ANN): A green lane and periodic commuting arrangement will be established between Singapore and Malaysia to meet the needs of different groups of cross-border travellers, a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Saturday (June 27), following a telephone call between Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.

The two leaders, who spoke on Friday, discussed the gradual and phased resumption of cross-border travel between Singapore and Malaysia.

The Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) will facilitate cross-border travel for essential business and official purposes between both countries. Travellers would have to adhere to a set of Covid-19 prevention and public health measures, which are still being discussed and will have to be mutually agreed upon by both countries.

The Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) will allow Singapore and Malaysia residents who hold long-term immigration passes for business and work purposes in the other country to periodically return to their home countries for short-term home leave.

They will be able to return home for leave after spending at least three consecutive months in their country of work, and they will be allowed to re-enter their country of work after their home leave.

In the call, PM Lee reiterated Singapore's commitment to address the needs of Singaporeans and Malaysians who were previously commuting between both countries.

Both leaders agreed that any bilateral arrangement would have to include mutually agreed public health protocols. This is meant to preserve the public health and safety of citizens on both sides while taking into account the medical resources available in both countries.

The MFA said the operational details of the RGL and PCA are being worked out and the two countries will continue discussions on other proposals to gradually facilitate further cross-border movement of people so as to ensure a stable recovery of the two countries from the Covid-19 situation.

In another development, Bernama reported that Singapore and Malaysia have agreed to establish the PCA to allow residents from both nations who hold long-term immigration passes for business and work purposes in the other country to periodically return to their home countries for short-term home leave.

The commitment was made by Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong during a telephone call with his Malaysian counterpart Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin on Friday, said the republic’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in a statement here.

"They will be able to return home for leave after spending at least three consecutive months in their country of work, and they will be allowed to re-enter their country of work after their home leave, ” MFA said in its statement.

The two leaders also agreed to establish the RGL to facilitate cross-border travel for essential business and official purposes between both countries.

Travellers, however, will have to adhere to a set of Covid-19 prevention and public health measures which are under discussion and will have to be mutually agreed upon by both countries.

MFA noted that both prime ministers had tasked their officials to work expeditiously on the operational details of the RGL and PCA.

The officials have also been tasked "to continue discussions on other proposals to gradually facilitate more cross-border movement of people, so as to ensure a stable recovery by both Singapore and Malaysia from the Covid-19 situation, ” it said.

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