S’porean visitors encouraged to sign up for automated immigration service

December 17, 2009
Singapore Democrats

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Farik Zolkepli
The Star Online

Dr Ng pointing out that more signages should be put up at certain places in the Sultan Iskandar Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex in Johor Baru

The Tourism Ministry wants to encourage more frequent visitors from Singapore to use the Malaysian Automated Clearance System (MACS) for faster and smoother Immigration checks.

Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen said that so far, over 500 Singaporeans, who enter Malaysia at least four times a month, had signed up for the service which would enable them to be cleared through the Immigration checkpoints in three seconds.

“However, we want more of them to take advantage of the service,” she told a press conference after a visit to the Sultan Iskandar Customs, Immigration and Quar­antine Complex here yesterday.

Improving facilities: Dr Ng pointing out that more signages should be put up at certain places in the Sultan Iskandar Customs, Immigration and Quarantine Complex in Johor Baru Wednesday.

Dr Ng said the ministry would step up its efforts to create more awareness on the service.

“Tour operators have also been instructed to organise seminars about the new system in Singapore,” she said.

Dr Ng also urged the authorities at the complex to improve services including providing facilities for the elderly and children to lure more Singaporeans into Malaysia.

Singaporean arrivals reached 10.5 million in the first 10 months of the year compared with nine million for the corresponding period last year.

“We urged the authorities to deliver high quality services in order to attract more Singaporeans to come. We will also conduct a study on the response time for tourists at the complex during peak and low periods,” she said, adding that traffic congestion problems should also be add­ressed by the relevant authorities.

Dr Ng said Matta had also been urged to assign translators at the complex to help tourists not fluent in English or Bahasa Malaysia.

When asked whether the detention of 23-year-old Singaporean A. Indra on Immigration violations recently would hamper tourist arrivals from Singapore, Dr Ng replied that the Immigration Depart­ment had acted accordingly as the woman had broken the law.

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2009/12/17/nation/5317932&sec=nation