Singapore

22 visitors from China on first day of unilateral border opening

Twenty-two travellers from China flew here last Friday, the first day Singapore unilaterally opened its borders to visitors from the country.

All tested negative for Covid-19 on arriving here, the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) told The Straits Times.

Singapore's move to unilaterally lift its border restrictions also applies to the state of Victoria in Australia. It is not known how many came to Singapore from Victoria on Friday as travellers are required to declare only the country they come from, not the specific state.

As part of the unilateral border opening, tourists and travellers flying into Singapore need not serve a stay-home notice if their Covid-19 test is negative.

The same applies to Singapore citizens, permanent residents and long-term pass holders returning from China and Victoria. Singapore had earlier announced similar unilateral measures for all forms of travel from Brunei, New Zealand, Vietnam and all other parts of Australia except Victoria, which until recently had been battling more cases than the rest of the country.

Since air travel pass applications opened on Sept 1, CAAS has approved 2,613 requests to come to Singapore from Brunei, New Zealand, Vietnam, Australia and China. CAAS had said on Oct 29 that China and Victoria were the latest added to the list of countries with unilateral openings as they have comprehensive public health surveillance systems and had successfully controlled the spread of the Covid-19 virus.

China has a virus local incidence rate of 0.00009 cases per 100,000 people, while Victoria has a rate of 0.099 cases per 100,000 people, it noted in a statement.

Singapore also has an upcoming two-way travel bubble with Hong Kong and multiple green lanes for business and official travel with Japan, South Korea, China, Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia and Germany. - THE STRAITS TIMES

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