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FMM welcomes road to endemicity

FMM In The News: NEW STRAITS TIMES, KUALA LUMPUR, Wednesday, March 9, 2022 - The government's decision to fully reopen Malaysia's borders on April 1 is expected to spur the manufacturing sector's growth besides revitalising the tourism sector.

Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) president Tan Sri Soh Thian Lai said the exit strategy of transitioning into endemicity coincided with growing external demand of the manufacturing sector.

Malaysia, he said, was well-protected to safely enter the endemic phase, as the country's high vaccination coverage and increasing booster uptake, has lowered the number of new Category 3, 4 and 5 infections.  

"Based on the FMM – MIER Business Conditions Survey 2H2022, respondents indicated that heading into 2022, growing external demand is expected to improve the manufacturing sector's recovery considerably.  

"This exit strategy to move Malaysia into the endemic phase comes at an opportune time to further bolster businesses and the economy. 

"The reopening of international borders for fully vaccinated travellers at this current juncture is lauded and fully supported. 

"This move will facilitate human capital movement for work and trade that will have a positive impact on the recovery of industries as well as help address the unemployment caused by the Covid-19 pandemic," he said in a statement. 

Soh said many companies were seeking new business opportunities, diversifying their business and products, as well as exploring new markets as part of their business revival strategies. 

"The reopening of the international borders will allow company staff to travel overseas to meet buyers and promote their products. 

"It will also enable their business partners, customers, vendors and technical experts to be physically present in Malaysia to seal the negotiations as well as to commission projects," he added. 

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, on Tuesday, announced that Malaysia would enter a transitional phase into endemicity, starting April 1. 

Under this phase, he said the country's international borders would be fully reopened after a two-year hiatus and the mandatory quarantine requirement for fully vaccinated travellers removed.

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