KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysia will implement six short-term measures to handle the congestion at checkpoints especially at Bangunan Sultan Iskandar (BSI) Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) complex and the Sultan Abu Bakar CIQ (KSAB) complex in Johor.

Also decided was extending the use of autogate for all foreign visitors; increasing the number of Customs scanning machines, increasing the number of lorry counters at KSAB on par with Tuas; usage of hybrid counters; and the development of immigration integrated system (IIS) with automation features.

A meeting of the Cabinet Committee to study a single agency at national borders and checkpoints including ports decided on the measures. The aim is to facilitate trade, Bernama reported.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail’s office says the meeting took cognizance of the congestion and management challenges at the BSI CIQ and KSAB (Second Link CIQ) as well as agreeing on infrastructure and system improvements to overcome congestion at the two checkpoints.

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She says the implementation of the short-term measures to address the congestion are reopening the Malaysia Automated Clearance System at KSAB on June 19; procurement tender for MACS valued at RM9 million by December; mobilisation of officers from less congested counters to more congested counters.

Also decided were opening contra lanes for cars; compulsory overtime shift (7 am to 8 am) and the opening of all counters for MBike, the statement said.

There will also be an increase in the number of MBike counters for motorcycles going out of Malaysia; biometric exemption for visitors going out; filling up 99 per cent of the Immigration Department posts and Malaysia-Singapore bilateral cooperation for a single clearance.

It says the Home Ministry will carry out the study as the secretariat while the scope of the study would cover three domains namely land, air and sea and the focus of the study at this stage is on land. The study will end by the middle of next year.

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According to the statement, based on initial findings, there are three optional proposals for the single body which can be implemented namely coordinate and integration (reformative concept), New (transformative concept) and Combination (Transformative concept).