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IATA’s warning to Australia


From 8 September, fully vaccinated people from countries approved to travel in Singapore’s Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) will be able to travel to and from Singapore without quarantine, provided they undergo several COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests.

 

The first countries off the bat will be Germany and Borneo. 

 

Travellers from Australia, being a Category 2 country, will have to serve out a seven day stay-at-home notice. There is no mandatory quarantine for travellers from New Zealand, China and Taiwan, just an on-arrival PCR test, AFR reported. 

 

International Air Transport Association deputy director general Conrad Clifford said the announcement was “a positive step in the right direction”, claiming the move, while still understandably cautious “will help with the recovery of the aviation and tourism sectors”.

 

“A data driven approach using vaccination and testing can manage the risk of COVID-19 when reopening borders to international travel,” he said.

 

“Singapore has shown leadership in demonstrating that it is safe to reopen international travel without quarantine.”

 

But Clifford warned Singapore’s Asia Pacific neighbours that chasing that elusive zero-COVID cases was risky. 

 

“It has been 1.5 years since the world closed its borders to international travel. A lot more is known today about COVID-19. 

 

“Unfortunately many states in Asia Pacific continue to adopt a risk adverse zero-COVID approach, and continue to shut their borders. This is not sustainable and is detrimental to both their economies and their populations.

 

“We have seen moves around the world to reopen borders, allow international travel, and restarting their aviation and tourism sectors. Asia-Pacific risks being left behind.”

 

Applications for Singapore’s VTL open 1 September.

 

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Published: 23 August 2021


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