Following Malaysia’s announcement on a Movement Control Order on March 16, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong confirmed yesterday that those living in Johor but working in Singapore will have to comply with the travel restrictions.
This means that they can no longer commute across the causeway border from today till March 31.
“We are therefore working out arrangements with our companies to help these Malaysian workers stay in Singapore temporarily, if they would like to do so,” said PM Lee.
Additionally, Manpower Minister Josephine Teo also announced yesterday that the government will be offering financial support to firms affected by the Malaysia lockdown, albeit a “temporary relief measure.”
Specifically, these firms will receive an allowance of $50 per worker per night for 14 nights to cover the extra costs incurred.
“MOM has been working with tripartite partners to support the affected companies. If they need their workers to stay in Singapore, the way to help them is to find suitable accommodation,” said Mrs Teo at a press conference.
She added that affected workers should first seek accommodation with friends, family and colleagues, before turning to stay at hotels or dormitories.
Regardless of the arrangements, Mrs Teo expressed her appreciation to businesses who responded quickly and “incurred some additional costs as a result.”
SBS Transit and SMRT, for instance, has housed their Malaysian bus drivers in a hotel for two weeks so scheduled bus services would not be affected.
Moving forward, companies should assess what needs to be done in terms of manpower staffing and work out “sustainable arrangements,” stressed Mrs Teo.
Featured Image Credit: Bernama