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SOPs for Phase Three of Malaysia's National Recovery Plan (August 2021)

SOPs for Phase Three of Malaysia's National Recovery Plan (August 2021)

In Phase Three, all economic activities will be allowed to operate, except high-risk activities in the 'negative' list. Public service and private sector workplaces can also operate at 80% in-person attendance.

With Perlis, Labuan and Sarawak moving to Phase Three of Malaysia's National Recovery Plan (Pelan Pemulihan Negara/PPN) today (4 August 2021), the National Security Council (Majlis Keselamatan Negara/MKN) has released a set of SOPs to be noted during the Phase.

In Phase Three, all economic activities will be allowed to operate, except high-risk activities listed in the 'negative' list, such as spas, pedicure & manicure providers, and pubs and night clubs. Cross-district travel will also be allowed throughout the Phase, while cross-state travel will remain banned.

Things to note:

The set of SOPs for Phase Three, which details updated attendance capacities for the public and private sectors, types of travel allowed, and more, is shared below.

Movement control

  • Cross-district travel within the same state is allowed.
  • However, cross-state travel is not allowed.
  • The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) is responsible for implementing control over local areas of infection with the help of ATM, APM & RELA. The entrance and exit of the PKP area will be closed, with entry controlled by the PDRM.
  • Only three (3) household representatives are allowed to go out, only to get food supplies, medicine, dietary supplements and basic necessities.
  • A maximum of three (3) people, including patients, are allowed out for health care services, medical, screening tests, vaccination programmes, safety or emergencies.
  • The number of passengers in taxis and e-hailing rides is limited to three (3) people, including the driver, and passengers must sit in the back.
  • The number of people allowed in the vehicle carrying goods as well as the chain of economic or industrial activities including the transportation of workers depends on the vehicle registration license. 
  • The number of people allowed in the Department Vehicle or the Official Car of the Post is based on the capacity of the vehicle.
  • Activities and services at all airports and ports are allowed to operate 24 hours.
  • Sea and land public transport services such as stop buses, express buses, ferries and other public transport are allowed to operate based on the full capacity of vehicles.
  • Unloading activities at premises, factories and ports are permitted.
  • Movement for cases of death and natural disasters is allowed after obtaining permission from PDRM.
  • The movement of disaster or humanitarian aid by NGOs requires permission from the State Disaster Management Committee or District Disaster Management Committee in the area affected by the disaster and the aid is channeled through the Disaster Operations Control Center (PKOB) in the area.
  • Movement across districts and states for the purpose of COVID-19 vaccination at Vaccination Centers (PPVs) outside the district or state of residence is permitted, by showing appointment details on the MySejahtera application, website or SMS.
  • Members of Parliament and State Assemblymen are allowed across districts and states to visit their respective constituencies.
  • Movement of short-term business visitors under the approval of the One Stop Center Initiative (OSC) for official or business purposes is allowed, after obtaining permission from PDRM.
  • Long distance, cross state travel for married couples is allowed between Phase Three and Phase Two states, with the permission of PDRM.

Public service sector

  • Subject to the current direction of the Secretary General.
  • Government offices will operate on a hybrid basis, through presence in the office and and work-from-home using the following approaches:
    • Office attendance does not exceed 80% for the whole (excluding frontliners, security, defence and enforcement services) and 20% BDR by rotation.
    • Counter services are open subject to the current instructions of the Chief Secretary to the Government (KSN).
    • Attendance in office must be accompanied by official instruction documents and employee passes.

*Subject to the current direction of the Secretary General.

Private sector

  • All essential services sectors approved by the relevant Ministry or Agency may operate during this period, subject to an approval letter of the relevant Ministry.
  • The movement of employees is subject to registration, an operating approval letter, an employee pass or employer confirmation letter.
  • Employee attendance capacity for the private sector is limited to 80%.

Meetings, seminars, workshops, courses, trainings, talks and official ceremonies

  • Face-to-face meetings of Government and private agencies are allowed, without involving the presence of representatives of outside agencies, at 50% capacity and with physical distancing in place.
  • Meetings involving external agencies are encouraged to be done via video conferencing.
  • Seminars, workshops, courses, trainings and talks are not allowed, unless ongoing in-service training can be implemented in the training area through the Camp Based Training method.
  • Seminars, workshops, courses, trainings and talks conducted online are allowed.
  • Critical interviews that need to be conducted are allowed both in-person and online.
  • Formal councils are allowed to take place, with 50% capacity of the premises and physical distancing in place.

Businesses and services 

  • Restaurant operators including hotels, sports and recreation club houses, eateries, food stalls, food trucks, roadside hawkers, street hawkers, food courts, hawker centers, roadside food stalls or kiosks are allowed to operate from 6.00am to midnight.
  • Food sale activities are allowed by dine-in, take-away, drive-through or delivery.
  • Dine-in activities with physical distancing of at least one meter are subject to the relevant SOPs by KPDNDHEP.
  • Health service providers such as hospitals, clinics, medical laboratories, veterinary hospitals and veterinary clinics can operate for up to 24 hours or according to an operating license.
  • Petrol stations are allowed to operate from 6.00am to midnight, except petrol stations on toll highways, which can operate for up to 24 hours.
  • All distribution trade sectors are allowed to operate from 6.00am to midnight, or in accordance with the license conditions.
  • Spas, reflexology, massage centres, wellness and pedicure and manicure services are not allowed to operate.

Creative and entertainment industry activities

  • The development and broadcasting of creative content by recording or live broadcast including animation, filming, drama, promotion, sitcoms and the like, including dance activities, theater, musical arts, cultural and heritage performances and musical arts is allowed, without spectators, and with total management and crews attendance limited to 70%.
  • Creative content filming activities inside and outside the studio (outdoor) are allowed, in strict compliance with SOPs issued by FINAS.
  • Indoor / outdoor busking activities are permitted, and must comply with physical distancing measures.
  • Performances in hotel lounges are allowed, with a capacity of 50% of the premises space and physical distancing.
  • Drive-in cinema activities are allowed.

List of activities that are not allowed (negative list)


  • Spa operations, reflexology, massage centres, wellness and pedicure and manicure services.

Creative industry and entertainment activities

  • Activities in cinemas.
  • Activities in nightclubs or pubs

Social activities

  • Social events such as feasts, festive celebrations, wedding or engagement celebrations, wedding ceremonies, receptions, aqiqah ceremonies, prayers, tahlil, birthday celebrations, birthday celebrations, reunions, retreats and others social gatherings.
  • Seminars, workshops, courses, trainings, conferences, talks, exhibitions and activities related to Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) in-person. 

Tourism and cultural activities

  • Cross-state tourism activities
  • Overseas tourism activities
  • In-country tourism activities involving foreign tourists entering Malaysia

Sports and recreation activities

  • All sports and recreational activities requiring physical contact, except the organisation of national or international level tournaments or competitions, with the permission of KBS.
  • Organising of all tournaments or competitions except those approved by KBS.
  • The presence of spectators or supporters at sports and recreation venues.
  • Participation of Malaysian athletes/coaches/officers/technicians in tournaments or competitions or matches abroad, without the approval of the Malaysian Immigration Department (JIM) and the support of KBS/ MSN.
  • Entry of foreign athletes/coaches/officers/technicians into Malaysia without the approval of JIM and the support of KBS/MSN, and without complying with the rules for the entry of foreigners into Malaysia.
  • Sports and recreational activities carried out outside or across the movement control command areas, except with the permission of PDRM.


  • Any activity that may require many people to be present in a place, complicating physical distancing and compliance with the instructions of the Director General of Health.
  • Other matters decided by the Government from time to time.

Read the full set of SOPs here, which includes measures for the education sector and markets.

Photo / 123RF

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