COVID-19 in Malaysia: Food industry recovery thwarted after half of states refused to leave lockdown
By Guan Yu Lim
- Last updated on
In May, the F&B industry in Malaysia called for food businesses in all states nationwide to ‘concurrently resume’ after the government loosened COVID-19 related lockdown restrictions, but has hit a snag when seven of the nation’s 14 states refused to fully restart operations.
Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced via a live broadcast that ‘almost all economic sectors and business activities will be allowed to operate from May 4’, including food manufacturing operations, after a lockdown that has lasted around six weeks since it was implemented in the form of a Movement Control Order (MCO) in March.
This loosening of restrictions had been deemed the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO).
The primary reason for this was clear: the economy. According to Muhyiddin, the country’s economy had been hit with daily RM2.4bn (US$556mn) losses since the MCO started to reach a total of RM63bn (US$14.6bn), and a further month of this would see another RM35bn (US$8.1bn) in losses.