13 NOV 2020 9.30pm
The food and beverages (F&B) sector says it should be included in the Home Ministry’s two undocumented migrants recalibration plans that would allow these migrants to be legally employed or repatriated voluntarily back to their home countries.
Malaysia Singapore Coffeeshop Proprietors’ General Association (MSCSPGA) president Datuk Ho Su Mong said the F&B sector also faced problems and could, in fact, suffer more than the four sectors mentioned in the plans.
On Nov 12, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin had announced that the recalibration plans would include the construction, manufacturing, plantation and agriculture sectors.
“We appeal to the government to include the service industry, especially our F&B sector, in the recalibration plans as they form a major part of the service industry.
“If we are not included in these plans, our industry will be further burdened and left behind if this (situation) continues, and it will definitely be difficult for us to revive and survive the business in this pandemic, ” he said.
The industry had been badly hit due to the MCO, Ho said.
“We are hoping to reduce some of the overhead costs like rental, loan interest and licence fees.
“Hence, we request for the government to extend the moratorium period for another six months or so in order to reduce the burden on the proprietors who take up loans to keep the business going, ” he said in the hope that licence fees can be reduced by local authorities as 2021 is nearing.
Ho also appealed to landlords or landowners to allow the rentals to be deferred or reduced for members who rent their premises for business.
“This will help the industry to keep afloat or else most of the shops will have to close down for good.
“We really don’t want that to happen as the economy of the country is of utmost importance. Hence, we have to shoulder and share the difficulties together during this difficult time, ” he said.
The Repatriation Recalibration Plan and the Labour Recalibration Plan will take effect from Nov 16 to June 30 next year.
So far, only the four sectors classified as operating under the 3D categories of dangerous, difficult and dirty jobs are permitted to employ undocumented workers under the Labour Recalibration Plan.