MACEOS urges govt to reopen international border


KUALA LUMPUR – The Malaysian Association of Convention and Exhibition Organisers and Suppliers (MACEOS) has urged the government to consider the National Recovery Council’s proposal for Malaysia to reopen its borders by March 1 as the next step towards economic recovery. 

Its president, Francis Teo said by allowing international travellers into Malaysia without quarantine (while taking the necessary steps to strengthen event safety and protect public health), the country could  reactivate business events and strengthen the people’s confidence. 

He said MACEOS is also looking forward to working closely with the authorities to develop stronger precautionary measures to ensure the hassle-free entry and stay of business event travellers. 

“Our members have been following the developments in other business event destinations closely as they begin to reopen for business events.

“We can recommend global best practices to develop a comprehensive framework in terms of standard operating procedures (SOPs) for Malaysia’s business events industry in the new norm,” Teo said in a statement today. 

Since June 2020, MACEOS has created and submitted a comprehensive health and safety framework, with best practices from around the world as guidelines for organising business events and meetings in the new norm.

These measures cover several key protocols such as sanitisation of venues, health checks of delegates, crowd control, procedures for contact tracing, social distancing measures and more.

Teo is confident that Malaysia and the business events community are ready to receive international visitors following the government’s vaccination programme rollout and establishment of SOPs across all sectors.

“Business and leisure tourism associations in the country have united to establish and implement the Travel Safe Alliance Malaysia (TSAM) to ensure safety and hygiene aspects are optimised in the industry, across hotels, food establishments, convention centres, tours and transportations nationwide,” he said.

Launched on Oct 10, 2021, the TSAM is a partnership involving four major tourism industry associations that are committed to increasing market confidence in Malaysia as a business and leisure travel destination. 

The four partners – the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents, the Malaysian Association of Hotels, MACEOS and the Malaysia Aviation Group (MAG) – have established a comprehensive safe travel solution certified by the Bureau Veritas Certification Malaysia. 

Additionally, seven of Malaysia’s convention centres have received the SafeBE certification audited by Bureau Veritas, in recognition of their commitment towards a safe and secure end-to-end business events journey.

The convenction venues are the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre; Connexion Bangsar South; Setia City Convention Centre; Setia SPICE Penang; Malaysia International Trade & Exhibition Centre; World Trade Centre Kuala Lumpur; and the Sabah International Convention Centre.

“Everyone has a responsibility to keep each other safe. I urge MACEOS members and industry players to continue observing the SOPs and taking precautions to be safe so that we may speed up our economic recovery,” he said.