Cabotage rules outdated in Malaysia

Industry Database

Malaysia should abolish cabotage for Sarawak, a senior government official has recommended.

The country’s current policy is to only allow domestically registered ships to move goods between ports in Malaysia.

“We propose to the federal government to evaluate the cabotage policy that emphasises on bringing materials that we import to go through Klang Port before coming to Sarawak,” Chief Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said.


“In the past, maybe it was acceptable because there was lack of volume but now, we have established international trade.


“So, it is time to abolish cabotage so that ships from overseas can come straight to Sarawak. In the past, we did not have Bintulu Port and our ports were not so suitable, but now there are containerisation facilities,” Abang Johari said.


Abolition of the cabotage could reduce the prices of goods in Sarawak – a move that is welcomed by local people.


“If materials are cheap, cost of production is cheap, and then prices will be more affordable. This is what should be happening now for us,” Abang Johari said.


This would also ease development plans for the state as construction materials could come direct to Sarawak instead of going through Port Klang, he added. 


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