Posted September 16, 2018 03:20:38 The Malaysian government is considering a policy that would require tourists from the country’s far western region to purchase tickets from Singapore to reach Kuala Lumpur.
The move has sparked fury in Singapore, which has a population of more than 1.3 billion and is considered the capital of the nation.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is also concerned about a possible rise in the number of foreign tourists arriving by plane.
“It’s very clear that our tourism industry is very important to the Malaysian economy,” Mr Lee told the Straits Times newspaper.
Singapore’s foreign tourism industry contributes about $400 million to the country, he added.
Malaysia’s government has yet to make a final decision on the proposal, which was first reported by the Strait Times on Wednesday.
It comes after a series of high-profile deaths in Malaysia caused by carbon monoxide poisoning at hotels, which prompted the government to impose a travel ban on the country.
There were also complaints of poor air quality and the failure of the country to adequately control the fires that were threatening to engulf the country in September.
A Malaysian man who died in an inferno at a hotel in Kuala Lumpur in February, the countrys biggest ever, sparked a national outcry.
Since then, Malaysia has launched a national air quality survey and launched a massive crackdown on the haze.
However, the government has also been criticised for failing to adequately implement the rules to prevent people from dying of carbon monoxy poisoning.
In the wake of the first Malaysia Airlines plane crash in March, Prime Minister Lee said that Malaysia was “going to step up the measures” to ensure the safety of visitors.
He said the country would “step up our efforts” in tackling air quality in the country and ensure that all travellers are provided with “adequate and appropriate” air quality.
With reporting by AP