SINGAPORE: Taiwanese auxiliary police officers (APOs) began their deployment at land checkpoints on Friday (Jan 12), the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said in response to queries from Channel NewsAsia.
On Monday, the Minister of Home Affairs K Shanmugam said in a written response to a Parliamentary question that Taiwanese APOs would be deployed at land checkpoints given the lack of Singaporean APOs to meet projected demand over the next few years.
Previously, it was a requirement that only Singaporean APOs could be deployed at land checkpoints.
"Operation needs are growing significantly, everywhere, including our checkpoints. Visitor numbers are growing and at the same time, the threats of terrorism have risen substantially," said Mr Shanmugam, who is also the Minister of Law, in his reply.
Taiwan was first explored as a possible source for APOs in late 2016, as private security firms such as AETOS and Certis Cisco found it difficult to recruit APOs from Singapore or Malaysia.
APOs are deployed for a range of security functions, including protecting sensitive installations and providing security at major events.