SINGAPORE: As close and immediate neighbours, the relationship between Malaysia and Singapore is of immense importance to both sides, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
“More active multi-level engagements and a much stronger cooperation are certainly the way forward for our two countries,” he said at a joint press conference with his Singapore counterpart Lee Hsien Loong yesterday, reports Bernama.
“This is crucial also for our cooperation in undertaking effective and meaningful (economic) recovery efforts so that our countries will come out stronger following the devastating impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Ismail Sabri is on an official visit to Singapore at the invitation of Lee.
He said both countries yesterday marked another milestone in their cooperation with the reopening of their borders through the launching of the land Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL-Land).
“This is part of the gradual reopening of our borders to facilitate travel between the two countries,” Ismail Sabri said.
He said he had discussed with his counterpart additional measures that both would undertake with regard to cross-border travel between Malaysia and Singapore.
Both of them agreed to include all categories of travellers for the VTL-Land, subject to the health requirements determined by both countries.
They also agreed to expand the VTL-Land to include additional bus service routes through the Second Link, trains operated by KTM and gradually to include personal vehicles such as motorbikes and cars.
“We acknowledge that the reopening of borders is important to reactivate cross-border social and economic activities that will benefit the people of both countries,” Ismail Sabri said.
They also discussed air travel between Singapore and destinations in Malaysia like Penang, Langkawi, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu.Ismail Sabri and Lee had a four-eyed meeting at the Istana in the afternoon.
During the discussion, Ismail Sabri said they also agreed on the need to resume work on their existing bilateral mechanisms.