If you scroll through social media, you would have already seen headlines for the latest and most popular news – enforcement on child car safety seats and rear seat belts. Apart from these two new laws, there are a new set of laws and policies that take into effect in Jan 2020 that you might not aware of. So, here’s a list of 5 new laws that kick in on Jan 2020:
1. Mandatory child car safety seats
For families with young children, child car safety seats will be mandatory from 2020 onwards. This is in line with Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail reminder regarding the mandatory of child car safety seats or the technical term, child restraint systems (CSR) starting January 2020. Besides, she also unveiled a guidebook created by Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS). The guidebook provides information about identifying and installing CSR.
The Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (Miros) recommends that every child below 135cm tall (approximately below 12 years old) should use the CSR. Enforcement of the child seat laws will begin immediately, but police will only be warning offenders rather than penalising them for the first 6 months.
2. Enforcement of rear seat belts
According to statements made by YB Anthony Loke, a new ruling that beginning 2020, all who sit at the back must wear the seat belts or face the penalty of being fined RM300. In fact, this law wasn’t new for us as it has been implemented since years ago. But, it seemed that there were not much done to implement it thoroughly.
Passengers aged 17 years old and over will be penalised if caught by law enforcers while youngsters under 17, the driver will be charged instead. The Road Transport Department (JPJ) also has stated that drivers of cars will be fined if they have no rear safety seat-belts installed.
3. Implementation of 6% digital tax on online services
Starting 1st January 2020, all digital services, including download/streaming of content, music, video or digital advertising will subject to a 6% digital tax. This is in line with the introduction of service tax on digital services that was announced last year.
Google is the first company to charge a digital tax after the announcement of the implementation of the law, followed by Facebook.
4. Smoking ban at all eateries
From 1st Jan 2019 onwards, smokers are not permitted to light up within 3 metres of any eatery’s perimeter. The eatery smoking ban came into effect where the Health Ministry gazetted that all food and beverage outlets as smoke-free areas.
The government gave public 12 months to adapt with the new regulation and now officially come into full force. First and second offences will get RM250 fine. Third-time offenders will be given RM 350 compound. However, first time offenders who pay up within one month can have their compound reduced to RM150.
Eateries that allow customers to smoke withing their premises will also be fined with the same amount. The maximum fine for smoking in banned areas is RM10,000 or up to 2 years jail.
5. Plastic-straw ban
Another additional regulation for Malaysian eateries to save the nature from the using of single-use plastic. The government has banned the usage of plastic straw nationwide this year. Eateries will no longer provide plastic straw for drinks. However, selected people are exempted such as handicapped or individuals with special needs.
This plastic straw ban is all part of the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change (MESTECC)’s vision to abolish single-use plastic by 2030.