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Singapore-Malaysia 'green lane' travel to commence on Aug 17

Starting from Aug 17, Singapore and Malaysia residents will be allowed to travel between the two countries for business under the Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) and Periodic Commuting Arrangement (PCA) schemes.

Launched on Saturday, the dedicated portal on the SafeTravel website will start accepting applications from noon on Aug 10 for both schemes, which are open to businesses in all sectors.

Applications for entry into Singapore must be placed by Singapore-based companies or government agencies seeking to bring Malaysian residents into Singapore for business and work purposes.

The RGL will allow for short-term essential business and official travel between both countries for up to 14 days, and covers air and land links. This is open to all legal residents in Malaysia, including Singapore Citizens, permanent residents (PRs) or Long-Term Pass holders who are resident in Malaysia.

The approval for RGL applications is expected to take about three working days. Successful applicants will receive a SafeTravel Pass for a single entry into Singapore in a given week.

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Travellers are to use the passes to apply for visas if necessary, and they must submit pre-trip health and travel declarations and declare their place of accommodation in Singapore. Use of the pass is subject to terms and conditions such as taking a Covid-19 swab test no more than 72 hours before departure from Malaysia and obtaining a negative test result.

When they arrive in Singapore, they will not be served with stay-home notices (SHNs). They will, however, have to take another test upon arrival and remain isolated in their declared accommodation until they receive the results, usually one to two days later. Travellers are to bear the cost of about S$200 for each test.

Upon receiving negative test results, the travellers will be allowed to proceed with their controlled itineraries submitted in the RGL application.

RGL travellers from Singapore to Malaysia will be subject to largely similar requirements.

The PCA scheme, which only covers land crossings, will allow Malaysian citizens and PRs with valid long-term Singapore work passes to enter Singapore, provided they are willing to spend at least 90 days here for work upon entry.

Employers are to make the applications at least seven days before their employees' intended entry date. There will be a daily quota for entry, which may be revised from time to time. Applications will therefore be accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Companies will be alerted during registration if the quota has been reached. The companies can expect to receive the results of their applications within one day. Companies will also have to bear the cost of testing.

PCA travellers will be required to serve a seven-day SHN and must head directly to their SHN accommodations from the immigration checkpoint via dedicated transport. This could include personal transport, private buses that only ferry Malaysian passengers who are serving SHNs, or taxis and private hire cars that take them directly to the declared accommodation.

Permitted accommodations are hotels, serviced apartments and single-occupancy residences, with cohorting only allowed for up to four employees if they arrive in Singapore on the same day and under the same PCA application.

A Covid-19 swab test will be scheduled on the fifth day of the SHN, and travellers who test negative for the virus will be allowed to commence work after completing the isolation period.

Travellers who test positive for Covid-19 in Singapore will be given the necessary medical treatment and can return to work upon recovery. Charges for treatment will be applied according to the prevailing policies for Covid-19 treatment in public healthcare institutions.

The arrangements for Singapore citizens and PRs holding Malaysia-issued PCA passes will be similar, but the travellers will be allowed to apply for waivers of the SHN if they are returning to Singapore for short-term home leave after spending at least 90 days working in Malaysia.

These applications must be submitted via the SafeTravel Portal at least seven days before the entry date.

In lieu of the SHN, they will need to take Covid-19 swab tests upon arrival in Singapore. They will have to remain in self-isolation afterward, until they receive negative results from their tests.

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