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Dining in, non-contact sports allowed for fully vaccinated people in more Malaysian states starting Aug 20

On Thursday, Malaysia logged 22,948 new COVID-19 cases, a new daily high.

Dining in, non-contact sports allowed for fully vaccinated people in more Malaysian states starting Aug 20

People receive the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine on a mobile vaccine truck in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Jun 21, 2021. (Photo: AFP/ Mohd Rasfan)

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s National Security Council has decided to ease more restrictions for those who have been fully-vaccinated from Friday (Aug 20) onwards, said caretaker prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin.

The relaxations apply to people in states and territories under phase one of the National Recovery Plan (NRP). These include Kedah, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka and Johor as well as the federal territories of Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya. 

Dining-in will now be allowed, said Mr Muhyiddin in a statement issued on Thursday. He called on eatery owners to provide more outdoor dining space for better ventilation as the risk of COVID-19 transmission was higher indoors.

“Owners must ensure that those who enter the premises for dine-in must show their COVID-19 vaccination digital certificates,” he said.

Non-contact sports and recreational activities will also be permitted for residents in areas under phase one. They can now exercise in both open and semi-open spaces from 6am until 10pm.

The list of permitted sports include jogging, fishing, equestrian, archery, hiking, golf, tennis and badminton.

“Allowed activities also include picnics and camping. Children aged 17 and below can participate with strict adherence to standard operating procedures (SOPs)," Mr Muhyiddin said.

Meanwhile, night markets and weekly markets are now also allowed to operate, he said. Both the relevant authorities and premise owners will need to ensure that customers show proof of their fully-vaccinated status.

On Aug 15, Mr Muhyiddin announced that more businesses would be permitted to resume their operations, such as car washes, home furniture and sporting equipment shops, as well as jewellery stores and hair salons. 

Previously, these were shuttered in states under phase one of the NRP, while states which had progressed to the second and third phases enjoyed looser restrictions. 

Earlier on Aug 8, it was announced that fully-vaccinated Malaysians and permanent residents returning from overseas could serve their quarantine at home from Aug 10 onwards. 

Dining-in, cross-district travel and domestic tourism activities were also allowed for fully vaccinated people in the states that have transitioned into the second and third phase of the NRP. 

Mr Muhyiddin noted on Thursday that the decision to further relax restrictions had taken into account the fact that Malaysia’s fully-vaccinated adult population has crossed 50 per cent, earlier than the targeted date of Aug 31. 

Data gathered by the Health Ministry, he said, showed that states where more than 40 per cent of their adult population have been fully vaccinated were seeing a reduction in the number of COVID-19 Category 3 (with pneumonia) to Category 5 (critical condition) patients. 

A person is considered fully vaccinated 14 days after receiving the second dose of two-dose COVID-19 vaccines, such as Pfizer-BioNTech, AstraZeneca or Sinovac, or 28 days after being administered one-dose vaccines like Johnson & Johnson or CanSino.  

On Thursday, Malaysia logged 22,948 cases, a new daily high, along with 178 new fatalities. 

In total, Malaysia has 1.489 million COVID-19 cases and 13,480 deaths. Of the 255,534 active cases, 1,060 are in intensive care.

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Source: CNA/vt

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