JOHOR BARU, Aug 23 — The Home Ministry is planning to increase the number of Malaysian Immigration Department inspection counters at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) Complex at the Sultan Iskandar Building, here.
Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin said an addition of about as many as 40 counters were aimed at expediting cross-border travel between Malaysia and Singapore, even more so when the borders are fully opened later.
“When the border is opened, we expect 400,000 to 500,000 people to use the CIQ daily. These (counters) are facilities we are readying. We want to prepare ahead for the future,” he told reporters after inspecting the Sultan Iskandar Building, here today.
In the meantime, Hamzah said the National Integrated Immigration System (NIISE) will replace the Malaysian Immigration System (MyIMMs). The new system would address all the weaknesses of the old system and it is expected to be implemented in 2003.
He added the system was not only equipped with biometric capabilities but also included a face recognition system.
“This is among the government’s plans to ensure smooth cross-border travels. When the system is ready at the Immigration headquarters in Putrajaya, we will integrate it with all checkpoints at the border as well as the entry and exit points of the country,” he said
Meanwhile, during his visit, Hamzah also praised the Johor government’s efforts to provide free bus services for the convenience of pedestrians who cross the Malaysia-Singapore border under the Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) schemes from August 17.
The RGL scheme enables cross-border travel for essential business and official purposes between both countries, while the PCA scheme allows Singapore and Malaysia residents, who hold long-term immigration passes for business and work purposes in the other country, to enter that country. — Bernama