Employers question new quarantine rules

Updated: Oct 2, 2021

MALAYSIA: The Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) has questioned the rules for quarantine and Covid-19 testing under the government’s National Recovery Plan (NRP), saying they are not in line with previous commitments to ease movement restrictions.

MEF president Dr Syed Hussain Syed Husman said members had filed several complaints in regards to the latest measures, in particular the quarantine period of 14 days.

“During the first Movement Control Order, the quarantine period for staff onsite was only three days,” he said.

Hussain also questioned the testing regime for employees in the manufacturing, construction, mining and quarry industries.

“The cost of each test kit is MYR 40, so that means a company with 1,000 employees will need to pay MYR 80,000 to test all of them every two weeks," he said.

“Businesses are just opening up with no jobs yet in hand while having to deal with collection and cash flow issues,” he added.

On a separate note, Syed Hussain also said the shift to remote working, automation and digitalisation would likely curtail labour demand in some industries like hospitality, food and dining, and entertainment.

“Employers now see companies can operate with minimal staff while cost is optimised while remaining competitive. Digitalisation will also slowly change the landscape of jobs and the way businesses run,” he said.

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