Govt To Conduct Further Studies On Cabotage Policy Says Loke
A cabotage exemption allows foreign vessels to carry out certain activities, such as undersea cable repairs, without restrictions.PETALING JAYA: The transport ministry is set to conduct further studies on the direction of the country’s cabotage policy.
In a written parliamentary reply, transport minister Loke Siew Fook said that the studies will take into account the industry’s needs as well as other micro and macro factors.
“The ministry is actively conducting engagement sessions with stakeholders and related parties to obtain a win-win solution for all parties involved, especially foreign investors, telecommunication companies, and local shipping industry players,” he said.
He was replying to a question from Lim Guan Eng (PH-Bagan) on whether the government would restore the cabotage exemption for high-tech companies to repair undersea cables.
Lim said restoring the cabotage exemption would boost investor confidence in the tech sector.
Cabotage refers to the right to operate vessels in a particular territory, with laws largely meant to protect domestic industries from foreign competition, ensure the safety of a country’s borders, and regulate activities in a country’s waters.
A cabotage exemption allows foreign vessels to carry out certain activities, such as undersea cable repairs, free from certain restrictions.
In 2019, Loke – who was helming the transport ministry at the time – announced that foreign vessels carrying out undersea cable repairs and maintenance work would be free from some of the usual cabotage requirements and fees, to speed up the approval process.
However, the following year, the exemption was revoked by the Perikatan Nasional-led government. - FMT
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