Singapore’s COVID Policy

Robin Low
4 min readOct 28, 2021

In Singapore, the Multi-Ministry Task Force is headed by Mr Gan Kim Yong (Health Minister — Engineer by training). And often, communications that come out seemed strange to me. Instead of having a lockdown, we have a circuit breaker, so Singapore can declare that it never had any lockdowns.

I’m sure there are people who can lead the task force in a much competent way, like Paul Tambyah — first Singaporean to head International Society of Infectious Diseases. But because of his political affiliation, he was not picked or be part of the advisory committee.

The government stance felt a little confusing to me. Sometimes, dine in can be done with groups of 5, sometimes 2, depends on vaccination status. People living in the same household cannot dine in together, etc. The regulations are strange and hard to understand.

Bloomberg Forum Delegates can dine-in in groups of 5, but Singaporean household cannot sit with their kids at restaurants.

We have about 90% vaccination rate and yet the unvaccinated cannot visit malls, but can take public transportation that does not require social distancing.

The restrictions are killing businesses. And I can see many seniors simply too tired to follow all the confusing rules.

It has been more than 18 months of the pandemic, Singapore has COVID-19 restrictions extended to Nov 21. But vaccinated visitors can travel to Singapore without any quarantine via Vaccinated Travel Lanes.

I must commend Mr Gan Kim Yong for coming out of creative ways to explain the situation. The healthcare workers have been through a lot in the past year as Singapore’s borders has always been open to heavily infected regions, and unfortunately, this has not worked out well.

I feel that the policies seemed to want to target a 0-COVID infection with all the restrictions, but on the other hand, allow foreigners to enter. I’ve been to the airport before and observed plane-loads of visitors from India come when India had a severe spike of the Delta Virus.

Robin Low

Author, Traveler, Innovator. Focuses on Social Impact and Innovation.