Singapore May Relax Workplace Restrictions Next Week
SINGAPORE – If the spread of the coronavirus in the city-state remains under control, the government will relax work-from-home (WFH) requirements from 19 August 2021, according to a press release published by the Ministry of Health (MOH) on Friday (6 August, SGT).
“In particular, up to 50 percent of employees who are able to work from home will be allowed to return to their workplace,” announced the Ministry.
For meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE), up to 1,000 individuals may take part in these events as long as all of them are completely inoculated. If not all of them are fully vaccinated, only up to 50 attendees will be permitted without pre-event testing (PET).
MOH forecasted that as of Monday (9 August), about 70 percent of Singapore’s population would have been completely inoculated.
“This gives us some confidence that we can start to re-open our economy and resume more activities. However, we will continue to take a calibrated risk-based approach in re-opening. We will monitor health outcomes, particularly hospitalisation and ICU cases, to avoid exponential increases that could overwhelm our healthcare capacity,” it stated.
“Looking ahead, when at least 80 percent of our population have received their full vaccination regimens, we will be able to take the next steps towards opening up our economy, social activities, and travel. At that stage, we can consider further easing of restrictions, while continuing with differentiated safe distancing rules for vaccinated and unvaccinated persons.”
Specifically, the government will require vaccination, or regular testing in lieu, for select sectors. First is for staff working in the healthcare sector, eldercare industry and those exposed to kids 12 years and below.
Second are employees in sectors that interact with clients in higher-risk mask-off settings, as well as those at Singapore’s borders or COVID-19 frontline work. These industries include F&B, gyms, and personal care service providers.
Finally, the public service sector will take the lead in introducing this requirement for civil servants and public officials, including the uniformed services.