Malaysia has temporarily banned all cruise ships from entering the country’s ports due to the increasing number of Covid-19 cases, putting a further damper on the tourism industry.
The decision, which will take effect immediately, was made following instructions from the Health Ministry and Transport Ministry.
Malaysia’s health director-general Noor Hisham Abdullah said in a recent Facebook posting: “The entry and transit of cruise vessels, passengers and crew members require considerable medical resources to be made available at ports for screening and treatment purposes.
“During this difficult period, it is important that more medical resources are concentrated at hospitals to attend to medical emergencies and undertake preventive measures.”
Last year, Penang recorded 449,885 cruise passengers, while Port Klang received 360,000 passengers, with 150 cruise liners calling on the port.
Malaysia joins several countries which has banned cruise ships from entering their ports, including Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, and the Maldives.