Coronavirus: Singapore, Brunei set up green lane for essential travel

Applications now open; controlled itineraries and swab tests among conditions for travellers

Those approved to travel from Singapore to Brunei must have remained in Singapore at least 14 days before departure. PHOTOS: ST FILE

Essential travel between Brunei and Singapore has been made possible following agreements by both countries to establish reciprocal green lane facilities at both ends.

Singapore currently has similar arrangements in place with China and Malaysia, and is discussing adding other countries, including Japan, to the list.

Such tie-ups are a critical part of the Republic's strategy to slowly revive air travel so that more economic activities can resume.

Applications for Singapore-Brunei travel opened yesterday, with travellers required to observe some conditions including controlled itineraries, a negative Covid-19 test prior to the trip and a swab test on arrival at their destination.

In a joint statement, the Foreign Affairs ministries of Singapore and Brunei said: "Both sides have agreed on an arrangement to allow the safe resumption of cross-border movement of a limited number of people, with necessary safeguards in place to ensure the public health concerns of both countries are addressed."

Education Minister Lawrence Wong, who co-chairs the multi-ministry Covid-19 task force, had announced on Aug 21 that certain provisions were being made to allow leisure visitors from Brunei and New Zealand to visit Singapore.

Those who have remained in either country in the last 14 consecutive days prior to their visit to Singapore will not have to serve a 14-day stay-home notice here. Instead, they will undergo a Covid-19 test upon arrival.

For the new essential travel programme, those travelling from Singapore to Brunei must get the government agency in Brunei or the company sponsoring the travel to apply for an Entry Travel Pass on their behalf.

The traveller's controlled itinerary in Brunei for the first 14 days must be submitted. When the Entry Travel Pass is granted, an approval letter will be issued.

A similar approval process applies for travellers coming to Singapore from Brunei.

Travellers from Singapore and Brunei must have remained in their respective countries for at least 14 days before departure and undertake a Covid-19 test within 72 hours before the flight.

Those going to Brunei have to download the BruHealth mobile application prior to their departure from Singapore.

They will be required to produce the approved Entry Travel Pass, negative results of a Covid-19 test taken within 72 hours before departure, a valid return air ticket, valid proof of payment for the post-arrival swab test and a valid visa for visa-required passport holders.

They may not be allowed to board otherwise.

Similar measures are in place for travellers coming to Singapore from Brunei. All travellers from Brunei and Singapore will bear the cost of their pre-departure Covid-19 swab tests.

Travellers arriving in Brunei from Singapore are required to undertake a Covid-19 swab test while in isolation at a pre-declared accommodation.

Transport from the airport to the declared accommodation will be provided by the Brunei government agency or company sponsoring the travel, subject to prevailing health measures.

Travellers will bear the costs of their stay in the declared locations.

If the test result is positive, the traveller will be given medical treatment by the Brunei government. The traveller will bear the cost of medical treatment in Brunei.

The measures are similar for travellers arriving in Singapore from Brunei.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 02, 2020, with the headline Coronavirus: Singapore, Brunei set up green lane for essential travel. Subscribe