Manpower Minister Josephine Teo has confirmed that 30,000 China nationals with existing work permits will be allowed to return to Singapore:
“That is why it’s very important for us to get in touch with the employers. Depending on their own business needs, they may not all want to bring back their workers. And we will have a better sense after they get in touch with us.”
Each work permit holder pays S$700/mth in levies to the government, and the government will lose “a major source of income” if these 30,000 China nationals do not return.
Millionaire minister Lawrence Wong added that the China nationals can “quarantine themselves” for 14 days when they return to Singapore, and there is no need for the government to quarantine them:
“All employers with workers returning from mainland China must now notify MOM on when these workers are returning… They must quarantine themsleves or serve a 14-day leave of absence (LOA)… The Government is stepping up the LOA regime with immediate effect by tightening surveillance and enforcement.”
The PAP minister said the government will provide S$1,400 for each China worker who returned and quarantine themselves for 14 days.
Singapore is seeing numerous cases of local transmission and several foreigners who came to Singapore have been infected with the virus. The Singapore government insists that the public do not wear a mask if “they think they are well”.