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Compulsory on-arrival ART for land VTL travellers entering Singapore from Malaysia after reports about new Covid-19 strain

SINGAPORE — All travellers entering Singapore from Malaysia via the land vaccinated travel lane (VTL) will be required to take an on-arrival antigen rapid test (ART), the Ministry of Trade and Industry said on Sunday (Nov 28).

Compulsory on-arrival ART for land VTL travellers entering Singapore from Malaysia after reports about new Covid-19 strain

A Covid-19 antigen rapid test kit.

SINGAPORE — All travellers entering Singapore from Malaysia via the land vaccinated travel lane (VTL) will be required to take an on-arrival antigen rapid test (ART), the Ministry of Trade and Industry said on Sunday (Nov 28).

This compulsory requirement is in view of recent reports of a potentially more contagious variant of the Covid-19 virus known as B.1.1.529, added MTI.

The World Health Organization on Friday declared the variant as a variant of concern and gave it the name Omicron, after the 15th letter of the Greek alphabet.

The new testing requirement will take effect from 8am on Monday starting with the first land VTL travellers arriving in Singapore.

The on-arrival ART will be administered at the Woodlands Temporary Bus Interchange and Queen Street Terminal. Travellers will be required to make an e-payment for the ART at the testing centre directly.

MTI said Singapore and Malaysia are launching the land VTL across the Causeway to further restore connectivity between the two countries.

“The on-arrival ART will allow us to reduce the risks of spread of B.1.1.529 to Singapore, and enable us to progressively expand the land VTL in a safe and calibrated manner,” said the ministry.

MTI said all travellers should purchase their bus tickets and ensure that they have the necessary documents ready before they board the designated VTL buses.

Under the land VTL, which launches on the same day as the VTL between Changi Airport and Kuala Lumpur International Airport, there will be 32 bus trips each way daily between both countries.

In the first phase of the land VTL, travellers have to be citizens, permanent residents or long-term pass holders of the country that they are entering.

Therefore, entry into Singapore via land VTL will be for Singapore citizens, Singapore permanent residents and Singapore long-term pass holders.

Entry into Malaysia via land VTL will be for Malaysians, Malaysian permanent residents and Malaysian long-term pass holders. CNA

For more stories like this, visit cna.asia

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Covid-19 coronavirus Omicron

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