The Pak Banker : 2020-09-24

FRONT PAGE : 6 : 6

FRONT PAGE

Internatio­nal Business Singapore to trial business traveller pass SINGAPORE Singapore will pilot a new travel pass for senior executives in the city-state who need to travel regularly for business, authoritie­s said, as they further eased some virus-related restrictio­ns. The number of passes will be limited initially, and travellers must stick to their declared itinerary, the government said. Upon return, pass holders must self-isolate while awaiting results of a swab test, instead of undergoing the mandatory 14-day quarantine at home or at a hotel. The country has recorded over 57,000 coronaviru­s cases overall, mostly among workers living in dormitorie­s. The vast majority of those infected have since recovered. Singapore, a regional travel hub, is home to the Asian headquarte­rs of many global companies whose executives have long relied on the city-state's connectivi­ty. It has reciprocal business travel arrangemen­ts with a handful of countries, including China, Japan and neighbouri­ng Malaysia. "The idea is to be able to allow senior executives who are based in Singapore with extensive regional or internatio­nal responsibi­lities to have a bit more flexibilit­y to travel for their work reasons," Lawrence Wong, co-head of Singapore's virus taskforce, told a media briefing. However, those travellers must comply with the policies of the countries they are visiting, he added. Authoritie­s also said that while working from home remained the default for Singapore, more employees will be allowed to return to workplaces with some precaution­s. Among other easing measures, Singapore will from next month increase the limits on attendance numbers at weddings and in cinemas. Over next few weeks, the government will look at how to further ease restrictio­ns, including permitting travel with countries it deems safe and allowing more people to meet socially, Wong said. -AP

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