Concerns raised as Malaysia partially loosens movement restrictions hinh anh 1Taking samples for COVID-19 tests in Damansara, Malaysia (Source: xinhua/VNA)

Kuala Lumpur (VNA) – Worries has increased over Malaysia’s new daily COVID-19 infections at the three digits for the second straight day on May 3, just one day before the country partially loosens the Movement Control Order (MCO).

On the day, the country reported 122 new cases, the highest number since April 16, bringing the total to 6,298 with 105 fatalities.

On May 1, Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin announced that the nation will allow a majority of enterprises to resume operations from May 4 and partially ease restrictions imposed to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

However, religious activities, large gatherings and businesses that involve close contacts such as cinemas and night clubs will not be allowed to reopen. Schools and universities will also remain closed.

The PM informed that the Government had lost 63 billion ringgit (14.6 billion USD) from the movement and travel restrictions imposed over six weeks. It will lose another 35 billion ringgit if the restrictions have been extended by a month.

Meanwhile, the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) said that Malaysia could saw an all-time high unemployment figure, higher than both the 1998 Asian financial crisis and the 2009 global financial crisis combined.

It estimated that unemployment could reach up to two million this year, or a staggering unemployment rate of 13 percent./.