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Causeway to operate for 18 hours daily, extension will ease movement of logistics operators: Malaysia minister

Causeway to operate for 18 hours daily, extension will ease movement of logistics operators: Malaysia minister

A queue of trucks wait to return to Malaysia's Johor via the Causeway after completing a delivery in Singapore on Nov 11, 2021. (File photo: AFP/Roslan Rahman)

KUALA LUMPUR: The operation of the Causeway will be extended to 18 hours from the current 12 hours after the land vaccinated travel lane (VTL) is launched on Nov 29, said Malaysian Transport Minister Wee Ka Siong.  

Dr Wee said that both Singapore and Malaysia have agreed to the extension, which will see the Causeway operate from 7am to 1am to ease the movement of transport and logistics operators. 

He said that since April last year, the operating hours of the Causeway had been reduced to 12 hours from 7am to 7pm following the border closure of both countries due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I understand that this has caused severe congestion that involves lorry drivers and logistics operators who transport essential products from Malaysia to Singapore on a daily basis.

“It is hoped that this initiative will ease the movements of lorry operators, trailers and logistics companies, and help recover the country’s economic activities, especially the transportation sector that has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Dr Wee said in a Facebook post on Friday (Nov 26). 

Dr Wee said that new operating hours will be enforced after both the prime ministers of Malaysia and Singapore launch the land VTL at the Causeway on Nov 29.

He added that he relayed the decision to representatives of Malaysian lorry and logistics operators, comprising Pan Malaysian Lorry Owners, Association of Malaysian Hauliers and Malaysia Tipper Lorry Operators’ Association, in an online meeting on Thursday.

Malaysia and Singapore will launch an air VTL and a land VTL next Monday.

For the land VTL via the Causeway, travellers will need to use designated VTL bus services.

The daily quota for the land VTL scheme will be about 2,900 travellers in total, with 1,440 passengers each way.

Meanwhile, six airlines have been designated to provide VTL flights between Singapore and Malaysia. 

Under the VTL, fully vaccinated travellers will be able to travel between both countries and be subjected to COVID-19 tests in lieu of serving quarantine or stay-home notice.

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Source: CNA/rv(tx)

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