Sarawak gov’t to make own decision on which economic sectors can operate during MCO – Abdul Karim

KUCHING: The Sarawak government will make its own decision on which economic sectors can operate during the Movement Control Order (MCO) period.

Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah said the Sarawak Disaster Management Committee (SDMC) would be studying the matter, and the committee’s decision would be announced soon.

“We took note of the decision by the federal government, but Sarawak will study and decide based on the state’s needs,” he said during a SDMC press conference giving the daily updates on Covid-19 today.

When asked on which sectors would most likely be allowed to operate during the MCO period, Abdul Karim said it depends on the feedback from the people.

“Sarawak does not have to follow the federal government’s decision 100 per cent in this. For example, the opening of barber shops has been the talk of the town now, which personally I think should not be allowed to open for the time being.

“But we will make the decision that is suitable for Sarawak,” he said.

On that note, Abdul Karim said that contractors dealing with water and electricity supplies can continue to operate during the MCO period.

“The police and the armed forces will allow them to operate,” he assured.

The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) said in a statement today that the sectors allowed to operate are barber shops, registered traditional medicine services, hardware shops, electrical and electronic shops, optometrist shops, and full-service laundry shops were also allowed to operate.

Its minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said companies in the additional sectors listed may submit their application to MITI beginning April 13, 2020, from 9am.

He said all applications must be made online at and only applications that are complete and fulfil the conditions will be processed.

Besides adhering to the enhanced terms and guidelines, operating permits will also be subject to compliance with the requirements set by the Ministry of Health (MoH) and guidelines by other relevant enforcement agencies from time to time.

Azmin said failure to comply will result in the immediate revocation of the operating permit and legal action taken on the offenders.

Other industries the ministry has also allowed to resume are machinery and equipment, aerospace and science, professional and technical services, including research and development (R&D) related to legal practice, oil & gas, and activities related to Covid-19.

MITI had decided to allow the said operations after engagement with various stakeholders, including business and industry associations, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), and other relevant ministries and agencies, including the MoH and National Security Council (NSC).

Source: Borneo Post

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