Ebene News – UA – Singapore tightens restrictions on travelers from UK after new Covid-19 strain emerges

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SINGAPORE – Singapore has joined more than 40 other countries in tightening restrictions on travelers from the UK, following the emergence of a new strain of coronavirus there that appears to be more contagious

From 11 Wednesday 23 December at 59 p.m., all long-term pass holders and short-term visitors who have traveled to the UK in the last 14 days will not be permitted to enter or transit by Singapore, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said on Tuesday

This ban will also apply to anyone who had obtained prior authorization to enter Singapore

UK travelers are currently required to serve 14 days’ notice of stay at home at a dedicated establishment

As for returning Singaporeans and permanent residents, they will need to be tested upon arrival and then again towards the end of their 14-day notice of stay.

Education Minister Lawrence Wong, who co-chairs the multi-ministerial task force to fight Covid-19, told reporters on Tuesday that Singapore is monitoring the situation in Britain very closely

“We are concerned about the new variety,” he said. “The preliminary assessment is that it is 70% more infectious, which is significant, and therefore we think it is safe to stop all incoming travelers from the UK during this time until we can learn more about this new strain of the virus”

He added that while precautions are already in place, Singapore has decided on further restrictions to reduce the exposure of these arrivals as much as possible.

“We still have to understand, beyond the fact that it is more communicable, if it will lead to more serious disease or will there be another impact,” he said.

“It is now necessary and prudent to have this additional precaution because of the uncertainty and the risk”

Many European countries, along with Canada and Argentina, have banned flights from the UK On Monday, Hong Kong halted flights from the UK, while the ban on the India comes into effect Tuesday at midnight

These actions come as the World Health Organization warned of a major alarm over the new strain, saying it was integral to the development of a pandemic

Countries that imposed travel restrictions acted very cautiously when assessing risks, WHO emergency chief Mike Ryan told an online briefing “It’s safe But it’s also important that everyone recognizes that this is happening, these variations are happening”

M Wong said the strain has not yet been detected in the Republic, but added that Singapore must remain vigilant and monitor how the strain is spreading, and constantly adjust measures at its borders and within the community.

The Department of Health noted that UK authorities were investigating whether the strain was associated with a change in disease severity, antibody response or vaccine efficacy He added that he will assess the data as it emerges and review border measures accordingly

Additionally, short-term travelers holding an air ticket with travel history to the Australian state of New South Wales within the last 14 days will not be permitted to enter Singapore from from 11 Wednesday at 59h

Singapore residents and long-term pass holders with such travel history will be subject to seven days notice of stay at home

The move follows a new cluster of cases in Sydney that has led the state to impose a five-day lockdown in the northern beaches region, which is expected to end today and will be considered by the state

Travelers from other parts of Australia will continue to be subject to a Covid-19 test on arrival in lieu of a stay-at-home notice

The air travel pass system allows all forms of short-term travel, including leisure travel This contrasts with reciprocal greenway agreements between countries, which are generally intended for long-distance travel. ‘essential business and officials

Singapore Airlines said in a Facebook post that customers who booked flights from the UK from December 23 would be affected by the new requirement

He added that affected passengers will be notified of their travel options via text message, email or through the SingaporeAir mobile app.

“Please be assured that customers departing from the UK who have had their flight canceled or who will no longer be able to travel because they do not qualify for entry to Singapore will be covered by our Comprehensive Travel Waiver Policy They can keep the value of their ticket as flight credits, rebook or request a refund, ”the airline said.

Customers who have purchased their tickets from a travel agency are also covered by the travel exemption policy They should contact their travel agent directly for assistance

Those wishing to keep abreast of the measures can visit the SafeTravel website

The health ministry reminded all travelers to accurately report their travel history, adding that strict enforcement measures will be taken against false claims

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Ebene News – UA – Singapore tightens restrictions on travelers from UK after new Covid-19 strain appears

Source: https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/some-travellers-from-new-south-wales-and-united-kingdom-not-allowed-to-enter-singapore