Bangkok, Dec 22 (EFE).- Singapore announced Wednesday it was suspending the quarantine-free entry program for travelers from a number of countries for at least four weeks due to the spread of Covid-19’s omicron variant.
“Our border measures will help us buy time to study and understand the omicron variant and strengthen our defenses, including improving our capacity for medical care and vaccination and administering booster doses to more people,” the Health Ministry said in a statement, adding that the measure would begin Thursday.
The city-state allowed since the beginning of November the entry without quarantine to travelers vaccinated with the complete guideline coming from more than 20 countries, including Australia, Switzerland, the United States and Malaysia, which also has a land connection.
People entering Singapore will again undergo isolation for at least 14 days in government-designated centers.
Restriction will not affect people who plan to travel to the country within that four-week interval if they have already obtained the entry permit granted by authorities.
As of Jan. 20, when in principle the suspension ends, the Civil Aviation Authority said it plans to limit and reduce by 50 percent the number of entries without quarantine.
Singapore has so far registered 71 cases linked to the omicron variant, six of them local infections.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, the city-state, which has vaccinated 96 percent of the target population with two shots and 34 percent with a booster dose, has confirmed more than 276,000 Covid-19 infections, including 817 deaths. EFE