Malaysia’s stocks fell on Tuesday after the announcement of a nationwide state of emergency to curb the spread of Covid-19 that infected more than 130,000 people and killed 555 people. The country reported more than 2,000 new cases yesterday.
On Tuesday, January 12, 2021, the palace issued a statement to declare a state of emergency, approved by the King, in taking a proactive step to curb the spread of Covid-19, requested by the Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.
FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index (FBMKLCI) fell as much as 1.6% during the session. The index closed the morning session at 1,605.48 points, decreased 11.77 points or 0.73%.
The state of emergency will last until August 1, 2021, but could be lifted earlier if the number of daily cases are flat or appears to be under control.
The Malaysian PM stated that there will not be a curfew. The civilian government and judiciary system will continue to operate as usual. People are ordered to stay at home, except for those with essential purposes. However, the parliament will be suspended and elections cannot be held throughout the period.
Despite declaring a state of emergency, the PM stated that the country remains “open for business,” saying that the measure only gives Malaysia “much needed calm and stability.”