13/4/2020: THE government will lift the operational ban for businesses that are only operating in the “green zone” during the third phase of the Movement Control Order (MCO), said Senior Minister (Security Cluster) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.
He added that the decision, which is currently being overseen by the International Trade and Industry Ministry (MITI), still requires approval by the ministry as it is not a blanket authorisation.
“MITI will look at the feedback from the public, while the approval for businesses to be reopened is not automatic as there will be application processes involved.
“The processes will be managed and monitored by MITI and a standard operating procedure (SOP) will be announced by the ministry soon. At the moment, businesses which are in the ‘green zone’ are being considered to operate,” he said in a press conference in Putrajaya yesterday.
Following the second extension of the country’s MCO, the government has decided to allow selected sectors to operate in stages during the third phase of the country’s MCO.
In a televised broadcast last Friday, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the selected businesses are required to follow strict movement control and healthcare guidelines and that the government would withdraw the leniency should they fail to adhere to the directive.
Following the announcement, MITI Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said the ministry has announced additional sectors which are allowed to resume operations and companies which are involved in the sectors could submit their applications beginning today.
Additionally, Ismail Sabri said the government will impose a maximum price control scheme for essential items beginning April 15 following the increase in reports on price hike by unethical traders who are taking advantage of consumers.
“The Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (KPDNHEP) has received 8,145 queries and complaints on prices and items’ availability. Thus, the government will implement a maximum price control scheme to curb the hike in prices of essential items.
“Normally, the scheme is implemented only during festive seasons, but we have decided to do it now. Once the third phase of MCO begins, the scheme will take effect,” he said.
He added that the list of the products which are going to be monitored will be announced by the KPDNHEP.
Ismail Sabri said according to daily inspections on 25 essential items at 1,205 retail premises, almost all of the items are being priced at a stable level, while the availability of items such as face masks and sanitisers still remains adequate.
News Source: The Malaysian Reserve