Govt studying requests for business operations to close at 10 pm

JELI: The government is looking into requests from industry players to allow business operations to be extended to 10 pm during the movement control order (MCO) 3.0, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed.

He said there were different opinions on the matter.

“The government has yet to decide on the matter but there have been appeals, and we do understand the reasons why the hours need to be extended.

“However, we have two sides here… the first, Malaysians who want regulations to be tightened even further when cases keep hovering at 5,000 to 6,000 cases. That means the government needs to ensure not many economic sectors are opened.

“Then there is the other group comprising traders, restaurant owners, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) who have been under pressure for more than a year and are hoping the government will be more flexible,” he said after checking on a Covid-19 vaccination outreach programme here today.

Under MCO 3.0, operation hours for most economic sectors are from 8 am to 8 pm.

Mustapa said the appeal for extra hours will be considered and decided by the National Security Council (MKN) on the advice of the Health Ministry (MOH) and the Finance Ministry (MOF).

“The relevant parties who handle a crisis like this will decide what is best for the people and the country. What is clear is that decisions taken will be balanced.

On moratorium for those affected by the pandemic, Mustapa said the MOF and the banking industry were in the midst of looking into the matter. – Bernama