SINGAPORE - Singapore has started vaccinating selected cargo drivers from Malaysia against the Covid-19 virus on Saturday (March 20).
The move is aimed at minimising the risk of Covid-19 transmission from workers bringing in essential goods.
It would also ensure these workers can continue delivering goods to Singapore, the authorities had said earlier.
One facility has been set up at 13 Benoi Sector in Joo Koon. Drivers told The Straits Times another such facility has been set up in Woodlands.
When ST visited Benoi Sector on Saturday afternoon, about eight trucks could be seen parked inside.
Over the next hour, about half a dozen more trucks entered.
Malaysian driver, Mr Toh Ah Peng, who received the vaccine with two other colleagues, said he was notified of his vaccination slot at midnight on Friday.
He was first informed he was selected for vaccination earlier this month. He has been delivering fruits to Singapore about three times weekly for several years.
Mr Toh said: "I am a bit worried about the side effects, but then I think it will help to keep me safe when I do my job."
He said he received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, and will return for the second jab in three weeks' time.
He said the entire process for the first jab, including the 30-minute observation for side-effects, went very smoothly.
He left the centre about an hour after entering it.
Cargo drivers from Malaysia who have taken both doses of the Covid-19 vaccine in Singapore will receive an immunisation certificate and be exempted from daily on-arrival tests 14 days after the second dose, the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) said earlier this week.
This also applies to workers accompanying them.
But they may still get tested from time to time, it added.
MTI said in a separate statement earlier this month that it would select eligible cargo drivers and accompanying personnel based on their frequency of travel between Singapore and Malaysia.
Those selected will be notified via a personalised SMS and be given details of the vaccination locations upon scheduling their vaccination appointments.
MTI had said that the vaccination sites will be located near the land checkpoints for easy access.