Global Courant 2023-05-17 17:50:00
JOHOR BAHRU – The move by the Johor state government to improve conditions at its two land checkpoints with Singapore has resulted in faster customs clearance for travelers, the state’s chief minister said on Wednesday.
Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi said the clearance process at the checkpoints had been reduced from an hour to about 30 minutes, especially during peak hours.
“While this is good, we will continue to work with our partners in Putrajaya to further improve the situation,” he said at a business forum in Johor Bahru.
Mr. Onn Hafiz, who has made nearly 20 samples at the customs and immigration complex since 2022, said improving connectivity to Singapore was of paramount importance.
“This will be an ongoing effort,” he said.
On Tuesday, Home Minister Saifuddin Nasution Ismail said the Immigration Department would allocate 100 recent graduates to the two land checkpoints in Johor.
“This would especially help BSI (Bangunan Sultan Iskandar), which is one of the busiest international entry points in the country, with nearly 220,000 daily cross-border movements,” he said.
Datuk Seri Saifuddin said a dry run was recently carried out and proved effective in reducing congestion during peak hours.
Other steps he has taken include building more autogates and combining passport control and vehicle entry counters into one counter.
From August, visitors will only have to make one stop instead of two when clearing the land checkpoints.
Mr Saifuddin said these few seconds may seem insignificant but they can have a major effect on overall traffic flow.
A lawmaker from Johor welcomed the Immigration Department’s new shifts for workers at both the BSI and Kompleks Sultan Abu Bakar entry points for travelers from Singapore, adding that it showed the government’s seriousness in addressing congestion issues at the checkpoints.