Singapore has announced it will ramp up testing for business travel pass holders and bar short-term travellers who have visited Vietnam within the last 14 days.

The country will also ease restrictions on travellers from New South Wales in Australia.

Introduced last June, Singapore’s Business Travel Pass (BTP) scheme facilitates essential business travel for executives based in the Lion City.

While overseas, BTP holders are required to stick to a “controlled itinerary” while taking steps to minimise contact upon return.

The latest changes will see BTP travellers undergo mandatory PCR testing on day three, seven, and 14 of their return to Singapore, in addition to testing negative on arrival.

The stricter testing regime will reduce the risk of undetected cases leaking into the community, according to the country’s Ministry of Health.

Beginning February 13, Singapore will also ban short-term travellers who hold an Air Travel Pass (ATP) and have visited Vietnam within the last two weeks.

The ban, which does not apply to Singapore citizens, permanent residents, and long-term pass holders, is due to an increase in the number of Covid-19 cases in Vietnam. Those eligible to return will, however, be required to undergo testing on arrival as well as 14 days of quarantine.

Meanwhile, travellers from the state of New South Wales in Australia will see their one-week quarantine replaced with a PCR test on arrival starting February 11. Singapore will also resume the ATP scheme for short-term visitors from the state beginning February 16.