Khalid: Safety standards to be further tightened and enforced

  • Nation
  • Sunday, 06 Jan 2019

Tourist enclave: George Town is popular with foreign backpackers.

PETALING JAYA: Safety standards for budget hotels and short-term rentals will be further tightened and enforced this year, says Federal Territories Minister Khalid Abdul Samad.

“All budget hotels have to conform to criteria such as obtaining the required safety approvals and licences from the Fire and Rescue Department,” he said.

“Everyone has to conform to all the legal requirements, otherwise they are not going to get their licences.

“Or, if they already have their licences and they do not conform to the rules, then we are going to stop them from operating.

“We are going to tighten up the implementation and enforcement.

“This is part and parcel of our 2019 mission,” he told The Star.

Khalid acknowleged that more and more places in residential areas were being run as bed and breakfast and budget hotels of late.

He said the Kuala Lumpur City Hall was working on a survey and a study on it, as many residents were unhappy with their residential areas being turned into a budget hotel environment.

“We are looking into this by studying all the complaints and views.

“We also have to study on the legal implications, such as insurance and all that. Some of them will not cover in the event of a fire because these are all supposed to be residential, not commercial areas,” he said.

Khalid said some resident associations accepted short-term rentals while others were against it, thus, guidelines were needed to streamline what was acceptable and not.

He also said these issues had created a conflict between home owners and resident associations.

“There are residential associations that do not reject the idea, depending on the locality and facilities available.

“But when it concerns places with smaller roads, or limited parking places, then it will start to create problems,” he said.

However, Khalid said that those in places where there were better infrastructure, then problems would not arise and people did not complain about it.

“It all depends on each and every case. But we will come out soon with general guidelines that will apply to every situation,” he said, adding the guidelines should be ready within the first quarter of this year.

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