Forum: Should airlines that repeatedly fly in imported Covid-19 cases be penalised?

The view expressed in the letter "Complete border closure not feasible here" (May 7) is one that has been heard frequently.

Singapore has been seeing imported cases of Covid-19 since this pandemic began, with many cases coming from a few higher-risk countries.

All passengers bound for Singapore, except Singaporeans and permanent residents, must be certified negative for Covid-19.

Despite this requirement, there continue to be non-Singaporean and non-PR imported cases.

Singapore's Covid-19 situation is under control because almost everyone does his part in complying with prevailing measures and practices. Those who do not are dealt with accordingly, and rightly so.

So, should airlines that repeatedly fly in imported cases be penalised too?

This is the case in Hong Kong, which temporarily bars airlines for flying in passengers who test positive for Covid-19.

Without punitive action, why should airlines comply with Covid-19 entry requirements?

Yes, closing Singapore's borders completely would affect our manpower situation, and impact businesses and the economy.

But businesses and the economy will also be impacted if there continue to be more imported Covid-19 cases from high-risk countries, and of a more virulent strain, leading to a rise in local community cases, clusters being formed, and the prospect of another circuit breaker.

Tan Soon Hock

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