Sabah is prepared to welcome visitors

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KUALA LUMPUR: Sabah would stand to greatly benefit from the much awaited reopening of the country’s border beginning April 1 as announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob on Tuesday.
Welcoming the announcement, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Hajiji Haji Noor said Sabah’s economy had been badly affected since the closing of internationsl borders some two years ago as tourism is among the state’s main income earner.
Stressing the need to continue to strictly observe SOPs set by the government, Hajiji said Sabah had been preparing for this moment to welcome visitors and to ensure this will help the economy.
The Chief minister, nonetheless, said Sabah will wait for the detailed announcement so that it can adjust its Standard Operation Procedure (SOP) to cater to the state’s situation and needs.
“In my numerous engagements with the tourism industry players, this (reopening of borders) is what they have been pushing for,” he said.
Recently, Hajiji had a lengthy discussion with Malaysian Association of Tour & Travel Agents (MATTA) national president Datuk K L Tan who had appealed for the reopening of international borders.
The Prime Minister in a special announcement on Tuesday said Malaysian citizens with valid travel documents can enter and leave the country as they did before the pandemic.
Fully vaccinated travellers do not need to undergo quarantine upon returning to Malaysia, instead, they will only need to get tested for Covid-19 prior to their departure and upon arrival.
Ismail said the decision to reopen borders was made based on “science and the latest facts” about Covid-19, stating that other countries have also started opening their borders.
The country’s borders have been closed since the first movement control order (MCO) in March 2020.