Effective 23 March 2020, 2359 hours, all short-term visitors (from anywhere in the world) will not be allowed to either enter or transit through Singapore, in a measure to conserve resources and focus on protecting locals from the spread of COVID-19.

This overrides all previous travel advisories provided by the island nation.

As of 21 March 2020, there were still 533 short-term visitors arriving in Singapore. In fact, in Singapore, almost 80% of the new wave of COVID-19 cases over the previous three days (as of 21 March, 12pm) were imported, most of them Singapore residents and long-term pass holders returning home from abroad.

Implications for work pass (WP) holders (and dependents)

In addition, from 23 March 2020, 2359 hours, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) will only allow the entry/return of work pass holders for those providing essential services, such as in healthcare and transport. This extends to their dependents, i.e. entry will only be provided to dependents of WP holders in essential services.

For Malaysians working in Singapore, the update is that the Singapore-Malaysia Special Working Committee has agreed that Malaysians with Singapore work permits will continue to be able to work in Singapore during this period, with appropriate accommodation arrangements. The transport of all types of goods between Malaysia and Singapore will also be facilitated.

Discussions in the Committee are ongoing.