Changi International Airport Transit Hall in Singapore on January 12, 2022.
Raslan Rahman AFP | Getty Images
SINGAPORE – Singapore intends to allow vaccinated visitors from all countries to skip quarantine on arrival when the Omicron wave passes, authorities said on Wednesday during a virtual press briefing.
Health Minister Ong E Kung said the travel rules are designed to prevent the importation of infections into the country, but this category of cases is only 1% of daily cases and “no longer has a significant impact” on the situation with Covid in Singapore.
He said that in the future the focus will be on whether Singapore visitors will be seriously ill and burden the health care system.
“We should actually focus less on SHN and tests on travelers, [and] more about ensuring their full vaccination and incentives, ”he said.
“Instead of having vaccinated lanes or VTLs with individual countries that we think are low risk, we should actually allow travel without SHN for … fully vaccinated travelers from all countries,” Ong said, having. implies notices of stay of the house issued to visitors. Singapore.
“We need to make this transition not now, but after the Amicron wave reaches its peak and begins to subside,” he added.
Authorities have not set a date for the new policy to take effect, but Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim He said the Omicron wave could peak in a few weeks.
As Singapore moves to a “system of vaccinated travelers,” it will first change the way countries are classified from which guests arrive.
From February 22, the countries will be divided into three main groups – limited, common and low infections. The vast majority of countries will be in the general category and fall under the same entry requirements if VTL has not been launched.
Authorities said countries and regions could be moved to a less-favored category if a new option of concern is identified.
Separately, a press release from the Ministry of Health says that the previously postponed vaccinated lanes with Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates will begin on February 25. Authorities have also announced that new VTLs will be launched for Israel, Hong Kong and the Philippines.
On Tuesday, Singapore reported a record 19,420 new Covid cases.
Over the past 28 days, 99.7% of reported cases had mild or no symptoms.
The city-state has reported 497,997 Covid cases and 913 related deaths since the start of the Covid pandemic.
About 90% of Singapore’s population received two vaccinations under the national vaccination program, and 64% of the population received revaccination.