With the starting of the unlocking process, Singapore on Tuesday announced that it will open its airspace for business travellers and visiting officials from all countries from next month. The development comes as the financial hub seeks to recover from a coronavirus-induced economic downturn.
Notably, Singapore is opening its international flights at a time when India has signed air bubble agreement with the country. Singapore’s trade ministry said under the new arrangements, a limited number of travellers can apply for stays of up to 14 days from mid-January.
Prior to this, Singapore already had arrangements allowing in selected visitors from countries such as China and South Korea. However, the new arrangement marks a significant change in easing of travel curbs.
Part of the guidelines, Singapore stated that travellers must undergo RT-PCR tests ahead of departing from their home country. And on arrival in Singapore and during their stay, they must undergo corona test.
The country has also made arrangements for visitors to hold meetings with their guests in specially designed meeting rooms with air-tight glass panels to reduce the risk of transmission.
The announcement about easing of travel restrictions came a day after Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong stated that the city-state had no choice but to ease restrictions or risk losing its status as a global hub.
On the other hand, the city-state’s economy plunged into recession by the pandemic, with international visitor arrivals falling to a mere 13,400 in October from 1.7 million in January. The city-state reported some 58,000 infections and 29 deaths so far due to coronavirus.