The Malaysia Shopping Malls Association (PPK), Malaysia Retailers Association (MRA), Malaysia Retail Chain Association (MRCA), Bumiputra Retailers Organisation (BRO), and the Selangor & Wilayah Persekutuan Electrical Home Appliances Dealers Association (SWEDA), sent an open letter to Prime Minister – YAB Tan Sri Dato Seri Haji Mahiaddin Yassin, expressing their mutual views in regards to the extension of the Full Movement Control Order (FMCO).
The letter stated that the announcement of the National Recovery Plan based on the threshold of absolute numbers of covid cases was imprecise, resulting in unnecessary losses. As the deadline for the next course of action approaches, the associations appeal to the Government to “judiciously research the data and incidences of covid cases by economic sector and by locality.“
According to the Ministry of Health (MOH), the retail and shopping sector contributed only about 0.8% of all cases even prior to the FMCO. The associations claimed that “this significantly improved and extremely low figures testify to the retail and mall industries’ strict adherence to the SOPs and should not be unduly penalized with closure from operating.”
With strict temperature checks and reduced frequency of people lingering in malls, they believe that malls are safe, and it serves as an escape for the public as they shop for their food and necessities. The associations expect that 50% of businesses might be forced to close if shops are not opened by early July 2021.
“We appeal to the Government to take all these positive factors into account in the upcoming review and allow the immediate re-opening of all trades in the malls (except for those in the Negative List).”
“Any prolongation in reopening will cause irreparable damage to both the retail and shopping mall industry which may not recover for the next few years, leaving us far behind in the economic recovery process. Therefore, we seek the government’s urgent consideration to mitigate the catastrophic but real scenario as predicted above,” it concluded.