COVID-19: Singapore to lift border restrictions for visitors from mainland China and Australia's Victoria state from Nov 6

COVID-19: Singapore to lift border restrictions for visitors from mainland China and Australia's Victoria state from Nov 6

Changi airport travellers
Travellers, wearing protective face masks amid fears about the spread of the coronavirus, at Singapore Changi Airport on Feb 27, 2020. (File photo: AFP/Roslan Rahman)

SINGAPORE: Singapore will lift its border restrictions for all visitors from mainland China and Australia’s Victoria state from next Friday (Nov 6).

This will take effect from midnight on Nov 6 and includes all travellers who are not Singapore citizens, permanent residents or long-term pass holders, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) said on Thursday.

From 12pm on Oct 30, visitors travelling from mainland China and Victoria state can apply for an Air Travel Pass (ATP) for entry into Singapore on or after Nov 6.

Applicants must have remained in either mainland China or Australia in the last 14 consecutive days prior to their entry and must travel to Singapore on direct flights without transit.

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They will then undergo a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test upon arrival at the airport. These travellers will be allowed to go about their activities in Singapore, without a need to serve a stay-home notice, if their test result is negative.

From midnight on Nov 6, Singapore citizens, permanent residents and long-term pass holders returning from mainland China and Victoria state will similarly undergo a COVID-19 PCR test upon arrival.

They will also be allowed to go about their activities in Singapore without a need to serve stay-home notice if their test results are negative.

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This latest initiative follows the earlier lifting of border restrictions for visitors from Australia, excluding Victoria state, Brunei Darussalam, New Zealand and Vietnam.

As of 12pm on Oct 29, CAAS said it had approved 1,375 applications from these places and received 602 visitors. None of the visitors tested positive for COVID-19 upon arrival.

CAAS said both mainland China and Victoria state have comprehensive public health surveillance systems and “displayed successful control” over the spread of COVID-19.

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Over the past 28 days, mainland China and Victoria state has had a virus local incidence rate of 0.00009 and 0.099 per 100,000 respectively. The risk of importation from these places is low, CAAS added.

CAAS said it will update the travel advisory to allow travel to mainland China and all of Australia. Travellers are advised to check the entry requirements imposed by these countries and take the necessary precautionary measures.

VISITORS RESPONSIBLE FOR MEDICAL BILLS

Visitors entering under the Air Travel Pass can expect to receive their PCR test results within 12 to 48 hours. After taking the PCR test, visitors must take private transportation, taxi, or private hire car from the airport to their declared place of accommodation, said CAAS.

“They must remain isolated at the accommodation until the test result is confirmed to be negative. Checks will be made to ensure that this is adhered to. After being notified of their negative test results, visitors will be allowed to go about their activities in Singapore,” CAAS added.

To facilitate the contact tracing process, visitors must download and register for the TraceTogether app on their mobile devices prior to departing for Singapore. They must also keep it activated during their stay and not delete it for 14 consecutive days after leaving Singapore.

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Should they subsequently test positive for COVID-19 within 14 days after leaving Singapore, they will be required to upload data in the app upon request by the Ministry of Health (MOH).

CAAS reminded visitors that they are responsible for their medical bills related to COVID-19 while in Singapore.

This includes costs related to tests and isolation imposed on visitors for public health reasons should they be suspected of being infected with COVID-19, as well as medical treatment for COVID-19.

Visitors can apply for the single-entry Air Travel Pass, at no charge, between seven and 30 calendar days prior to their intended date of entry into Singapore. More details on the conditions of the Air Travel Pass, application requirements and process can be found online

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Source: CNA/zl(ac)

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