Hotels and accommodations in Malaysia have been included in the list of essential services under the nationwide movement control order which kicked in yesterday until March 31, but they will have to adhere to a set of guidelines in their operations during the lockdown period.
This is in accordance with a federal gazette issued by the Attorney-General’s Chambers today. The new regulations, known as the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Measures Within the Infected Local Areas) Regulations 2020, will take effect from today until March 31.
As the priority is to contain Covid-19, the movement of people will be restricted. Hotels are to limit their services to only guests who have already checked in before March 18, while F&B services are limited to in-room dining. All other facilities and services of the hotel are to remain closed.
Hotels are also allowed to operate with skeleton staff on-site during this two-week period for critical needs such as security and engineering.
Kamaruddin Baharin, president, Malaysian Association of Hotels, said in a statement: “We are aware that many are confused with the situation and directives from the government, given that they have such short notice to prepare. But our advice is to look at the bigger picture and focus on containing the spread before the situation worsens. We should all do our part to stop people from moving unnecessarily at times like this.”
Malaysia reported 120 new Covid-19 cases on March 17, including its first two fatalities, raising the tally of infections in the country to 673.