The Multi-Ministry Taskforce (MTF) announced on Friday evening (30 Apr) that it will restrict entry for visitors coming from Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, given the sustained increase in cases reported in the regions.
In addition, from 2 May 2021, 2359 hours, travellers with recent travel history to Thailand will no longer be able to opt out of serving their 14-day Stay Home Notice (SHN) at dedicated SHN facilities.
Restricting Travel from Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka
Travellers with travel history to Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka within 14 days of their departure to Singapore are currently required to serve a 14-day SHN at dedicated SHN facilities. As there have been recent sharp increases in cases reported by Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, we will further tighten our border measures with these countries:
From 1 May 2021, 2359 hours, until further notice, all long-term pass holders and short-term visitors with recent travel history (including transit) to Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka within the last 14 days will not be allowed entry into Singapore, or transit through Singapore. This will also apply to all those who had obtained prior approval for entry into Singapore.
All travellers with recent travel history to Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka who have yet to complete their 14-day SHN by 2 May 2021, 2359 hours, will need to complete an additional 7-day SHN at dedicated SHN facilities. They will undergo COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests on-arrival, on Day 14 of their SHN, and another test before the end of their 21-day SHN period.
Travellers from Thailand to serve 14-Day SHN at dedicated SHN facilities
Given the increased risk of community spread in Thailand, all travellers entering Singapore from 2 May 2021, 2359 hours, who have a travel history in the past 14 days to Thailand will be required to serve a 14-day Stay-Home Notice (SHN) at dedicated SHN facilities. They will no longer be allowed to opt out of dedicated SHN facilities, even if they have obtained approval to opt-out earlier.
Travellers from Fiji and Vietnam are still allowed to apply to opt out of dedicated SHN facilities and serve their 14-day SHN at their place of residence, if they fulfil the following criteria:
a. Travelled to no other country/region than above-mentioned countries5, in the last consecutive 14 days prior to entry; and
b. Are occupying their place of residence (i.e. residential address) alone, or only with household members who are also persons serving SHN with the same travel history and duration of SHN.
COVID-19 PCR tests will continue to be administered before the end of the SHN.
Ministry of Health (MOH) has earlier announced that all long-term pass holders and short-term visitors who have been to India within the last two weeks will be barred from entering Singapore, or transit through Singapore.
On 21 Apr, Nepali Times reported that many Indian nationals who are stuck in India due to the coronavirus travel restrictions imposed by a number of countries, were using Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal, to fly abroad.
At a press briefing announcing the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble on 26 Apr, Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung was asked about Indian nationals flying in from other countries to bypass the current travel ban flying directly from India.
Ong replied that a traveller who has left India but stayed in another country before flying to Singapore would not have the same level of risk as someone who came directly from India.
The soon-to-be Health Minister said that anyone staying in one place long enough would assume the risk profile of that place. “I think, as a matter of general infection control knowledge, regardless of your nationality, if you stay in a place long enough, you assume the risk profile of that place,” he said.
“You may be from another country, but once you stay in a new country for a while, you assume a new risk profile.”
“But if your policy is to target risk, then for someone from a high-risk country to move to a lower risk country, stay there for some time, and after that remain non COVID-positive, remain negative, and then come to Singapore … they have lowered the risk in that process,” added Mr Ong.