TOP

2 November 2020

Cross Sector Questions

 
Gradual Resumption of Business Activities

1. What are the plans for the resumption of business activities?

Businesses will resume activities in a phased manner:

2. Are tourism businesses permitted to resume operations?

As part of the resumption of activities in Phase 2 after the Circuit Breaker, tourism businesses in Singapore are permitted to resume operations in stages from 1 July. For the list of tourism businesses that are permitted to resume, please visit https://www.stb.gov.sg/content/stb/en/home-pages/permitted-tourism-businesses.html.

Attractions, tour operators and tourist guides are required to submit their reopening proposals to STB for assessment. Operators must demonstrate effective implementation of safe management measures to provide a safe environment for customers and workers, and may resume operations only after receiving approval from the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI). These proposals must include safe management measures that are tailored to reduce the COVID-19 transmission risks at each attraction or tour. Please refer to the advisories for attractions and tours for the full list of requirements.

Hotels may apply to STB to reopen recreation areas for children (e.g. Kids' Club) and provide accommodation to guests for the purposes of leisure (e.g. staycations). Hotels may submit their application to STB for assessment and may only resume these business activities and related marketing efforts after receiving approval from MTI. Hotels that wish to resume these activities must comply with the required safe management measures. Please refer to the advisory for hotels for the full list of requirements.

MICE Event Organisers and venues (collectively, EOs) must submit a joint application and event proposal for STB’s assessment. EOs must demonstrate the readiness and capabilities to implement the Safe Management Measures (SMMs) required to meet the five outcomes to pilot MICE events in a safe and controlled manner. If STB is satisfied with the proposal, MTI will give the EO approval to carry out the event. Details on the types of events currently permissible can be found here. With effect from 28 Sept 2020, companies can organise consumer-facing events such as product launches, store openings and marketing/ branding events within its own premises. Prevailing SMMs apply and can be found here.

For more information on the gradual reopening of tourism establishments, please see STB’s press release.

Support for COVID-19

1. What assistance measures are there for businesses?

As part of the first set of measures to help tourism businesses, licence fees for hotels, travel agents and tourist guides have been waived. More information here

The Government has since introduced more measures under the Unity, Resilience, Solidarity and Fortitude Budgets, to help Singaporeans and businesses, including those in the tourism industry, cope with the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. For full details, refer to https://www.singaporebudget.gov.sg/budget_2020/

Tourism businesses should take full advantage of the support provided to stabilise their operations, manage their cash flow, transform their businesses, grow and deepen their manpower capabilities and keep workers employed. The measures that tourism businesses can tap on can be found here.

Support will also be given to help businesses and individuals defray third-party professional cleaning and disinfection costs for premises with confirmed COVID-19 cases. Full details here.

The COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act seeks to provide temporary relief to those who are unable to perform their contractual obligations because of COVID-19 and the resulting safe distancing measures. For the full list of specific contracts covered under this Bill, or for more information, please refer to the Ministry of Law’s website or STB’s website.

MOH has also set up the Quarantine Order Allowance (QOA) Scheme to mitigate financial impact for those who have been served Quarantine Orders. Under the scheme, claims of $100 per day can be made by two groups:

  • Self-employed; and
  • Employers, who have employees issued with Quarantine Orders

Please refer to MOH’s website for more details on the QOA scheme.  

2. How will the extension on the Job Support Scheme (JSS) be useful to business in the tourism industry?

JSS provides wage support for employers to retain their local employees during this period of economic uncertainty. All active employers, with the exception of Government organisations (local and foreign) and representative offices, are eligible for the JSS. This will be extended by up to seven months, covering wages paid up to March 2021 providing continued support for businesses and workers. The JSS support levels will be tapered based on the projected recovery of the various sectors. For more information, please refer to https://go.gov.sg/jss.

Travel Restrictions and Precautionary Measures

1. Who is allowed to enter Singapore?

All short-term visitors will not be allowed to enter Singapore, except for a few cases. Please visit the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority website for information on the groups that are allowed to enter Singapore and the relevant measures.

2. What are the latest measures for inbound travellers?

Please visit the Ministry of Health website for the latest health advisory and measures for inbound travellers. The measures for inbound travellers are also summarised here.

3. What are the requirements for travellers seeking to enter Singapore under the various travel arrangements?

We have re-opened our borders progressively through various travel arrangements, with the necessary safeguards in place to ensure the health and well-being of our community and foreign visitors.

For a quick glance at how the latest arrangements work, please refer to the infographic below. Learn more about the requirements of the respective travel arrangements at http://safetravel.ica.gov.sg

Updated as of 2 November 2020

file

Germany

Singapore and the Federal Republic of Germany have agreed on a RGL to enable essential business and official travel via direct flights between both countries. All foreign visitors must comply with the prevailing health measures. More information can be found here.

Hong Kong

Singapore and Hong Kong have established a bilateral Air Travel Bubble (ATB). While there will be no restrictions on the purpose of travel, all visitors from Hong Kong will be required to take a COVID-19 test upon arrival in Singapore. More information on the additional precautionary safeguard for visitors arriving from Hong Kong can be found here.

Due to the evolving situation, the ATB has been deferred. The new launch date will be announced in due course. Foreign visitors from Hong Kong who wish to continue with their travel plans on non-designated ATB flights, will be subject to prevailing border control measures and health requirements of both cities. 

For more details, please visit:

Entry into Singapore

Entry into Hong Kong

 

Protecting our staff and visitors

1. Should frontline staff wear masks?

Everyone must wear a mask when outside of their homes. This applies to workers at all workplace premises.

2. What precautions should we adopt to ensure safe distancing?

In Phase 2, most activities will be allowed to resume, subject to the following safe distancing principles:

a. As a default, measures should be in place to ensure that individuals maintain safe distancing of at least one metre at all times

b. Where not feasible or practical to apply one metre safe distancing between individuals, this one metre requirement can instead be enforced between groups, with each group made up of not more than five persons, and with no mixing of groups. Other safe management measures should also be in place.

Businesses must also comply with the Safe Management Measures outlined in https://covid.gobusiness.gov.sg/safemanagement/general (“Safe Management Requirements”) and any sector-specific requirements which apply to them. Businesses should also refer to https://www.mom.gov.sg/covid-19/requirements-for-safe-management-measures to continue to ensure safe workplaces. These requirements include the staggering of working and break hours, ensuring clear physical spacing of at least 1 metre between persons, and implementing SafeEntry to record the entry of all personnel and visitors. Strict checks will be conducted, and businesses that do not provide a safe workplace for our workers will have their operations suspended until they are able to do so.

Businesses and organisations are reminded to play their part to keep Singapore safe. Should they be unable to meet the safe management principles, businesses and organisations can engage the relevant agencies to seek approval for alternative safe distancing measures. Such businesses and activities should only open when they are ready. Businesses and organisations found to be flouting safe management principles may be required to close.

3. What do we do if a customer is a suspected case?

Please refer your customers to the nearest General Practitioner (GP) for medical treatment. The GP will refer patients who meet the case definition for COVID-19 to the hospital via a dedicated ambulance for further assessment.

Business Costs

1. How do we handle requests for refunds from affected customers?

Under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Bill, businesses and individuals who are unable to perform their contractual obligations due on or after 1 February 2020 because of COVID-19, will be given time to work out a solution with the other party without the threat or uncertainty of litigation or legal proceedings.

This provides temporary relief from legal action for up to six months. To claim relief, one party to a contract should serve a notification for relief on the other party.

However, it does not mean that obligations are postponed or are absolved. Parties may still be charged interest or penalties if they delay in performance or fail to perform.

This Bill applies to specific contracts entered into or renewed before 25 March 2020.

For the full list of specific contracts covered under this Bill, or for more information, please refer to the Ministry of Law’s website or STB’s website.

Sector Specific Questions

 
Hotels

1. When can bars and F&B establishments within my premises re-open?

Dining-in at F&B establishments and re-opening of bars within hotels are allowed in Phase Two of the Government’s plan to exit the circuit breaker, but the sale and consumption of alcohol is prohibited after 2230 hours daily.

F&B Eestablishments that serve food and beverage (including alcoholic beverages) that are permitted to operate must implement Safe Management Measures, as required by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and comply with the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Control Order) Regulations. In addition, F&B establishments are required to comply with the measures set out here.

Bars and nightclubs can only resume operations at a later date. Live music and television and video screenings are also not allowed.

2. Are staycations allowed?

Hotels may apply to STB to resume the provision of accommodation to guests for the purposes of leisure (e.g. staycations). Any hotel that wishes to apply must comply with the safe management measures required for hotels. Please refer to the advisory for hotels for the full list of requirements.

Hotels must submit their application to STB for assessmnet. Hotels may resume the provision of accommodation to guests for the purposes of leisure and related marketing efforts only after receiving approval from MTI. 

The list of approved hotels can be found here.

3. Can marriage solemnisations and receptions be held at my premises?

From 3 October 2020, marriage solemnisations are allowed to take place with up to 100 persons (including the couple, excluding vendors and service providers) for the entire event, subject to the venue’s capacity limit based on safe management principles. Participants in a wedding can be split into multiple zones of up to 50 persons each, or split by staggered timings with up to 50 persons in each slot with at least 30 minutes between slots for cleaning and disinfection of the event space. Venue operators may impose a lower cap if they are unable to comply with the zoning or staggered timing requirements.

Hotels holding these events must ensure that the physical set-up and event arrangements are in accordance with the above groupings and other safe management measures. Please refer to the safe management measures which must be strictly adhered to.

Travel Agents, Tour Operators and Tourist Guides

1. Are tours permitted? 

Domestic tour operators and tourist guides can submit their applications to resume operations. Tour operators and tourist guides can submit their application to STB_TID@stb.gov.sg, and may only resume carrying out tour activities after receiving approval from MTI. Please refer to the advisory for tours for the full list of requirements.

The list of approved tour operators and tourist guides can be found here.

2. What are the assistance measures for tourist guides?

Training Allowance for Tourist Guides

Together with the Ministry of Manpower, the National Trade Union Congress (NTUC) announced the NTUC Training Fund on 26 March 2020 to help Self-Employed Persons (SEPs) supplement their income and prepare them to be future-ready through skills upgrading and training. The training allowance of $600 for 80 completed hours of training has been superseded by the NTUC Training Fund. For more information, please refer to NTUC's website. You can also contact NTUC at 6474 0606 or send an email to SEP2020@e2i.com.sg for clarifications.

Test Fees

Test fees for Multi-language Proficiency Test and Area Tourist Guide will be waived until 31 Dec 2020.

Licence Fees

Licence renewal fees will be waived for all tourist guide licences due or paid between 2 Feb 2020 and 31 Dec 2020.

Self-Employed Person Income Relief Scheme (SIRS)

Self-employed person who also earn a small income from employment work will qualify for SIRS. Details on the enhanced SIRS introduced under the Solidarity Budget here.

Amendments to Travel Agents Legislation

With effect from 9 April 2020, the following amendments have been made to the Travel Agents Legislation:

  • The minimum net value requirement for travel agents holding a general licence or niche licence will be reduced by 90% to $10,000 or $5,000 respectively, for the period of 8 Apr 2020 to 31 Dec 2020 (both dates inclusive).
  • All travel agents may submit auditor-certified accounts in lieu of audited statement of accounts for financial years ending on or after 1 March 2020. Auditor-certified accounts must be reported in accordance with the Singapore Standard on Review Engagement – SSRE 2400 by an independent auditor.

You can read the full subsidiary legislation supplement here. For more information, please refer to the TRUST bulletin board (you will be required to log in) or email us at stb_ta@stb.gov.sg.

 

EVENTS

Updated as of 19 November 2020

A: PERMISSIBLE EVENTS

1.    What constitutes a MICE event?

a.    MICE events refer to Business-to-Business (B2B) events such as Meetings, Incentive travel, Conferences and Exhibitions. Events that are substantially recreational or social in character, such as company D&Ds, networking events or gala dinners, do not fall within the MICE events contemplated here and are currently not permitted.

b.    On 20 October 2020, the Multi-Ministry Taskforce (MTF) announced that work-related events of up to 50 persons will be permitted to be held outside of workplaces/own premises with effect from 22 October 2020. Work-related events include consumer-facing events (such as product launches, marketing / branding events) and work meetings (among colleagues or with external parties), training, board meetings, HR talks, townhalls, seminars, corporate retreats, conferences on business strategies, Annual/Extraordinary General Meetings, tender briefings to vendors and award ceremonies. More details on the MTF’s announcement on 20 October 2020 can be found here . FAQs on the Ministry of Manpower’s Workplace SMMs can be found here.

2.      What events are currently permitted*?

Updated as of 3 November 2020

Event Type

Venues

Location

Within workplace/ enterprise’s own premise

Third party venues

(i.e. Venues outside of workplaces/enterprise’s own premises) e.g. function rooms

Work-related events

·         Up to 50 persons at any time or the maximum number of individuals which the room or venue may accommodate if there is a distance of at least one metre between any 2 individuals, whichever is lower; and

·         At least 1 metre spacing between individuals at all times

 

E.g. Conferences, seminars, corporate retreats, Annual General Meetings, Extraordinary General Meetings, tender briefings to vendors, commemorative ceremonies, ground-breaking ceremonies, award and promotion ceremonies. Attendees may include external parties such as business associates, customers as well as members of associations etc.

 

 

In-house training

without 3rd party service provider

 

Training & educational courses by Education Business

·     Up to 50 persons at any time, or the maximum number of individuals which the room or venue may accommodate if there is a distance of at least one metre between any 2 individuals, whichever is lower; and

·     At least 1 metre spacing between individuals at all times

 

E.g.  Company holding training for employees within the office compound

E.g. Company engaging training provider to conduct training for employees in one of the office meeting rooms/auditorium

E.g. Company engaging training provider to conduct training for employees at a hotel function room

E.g. Company holding training for employees at hotel function room

Consumer-facing events

·         Up to the premises’ venue operating capacity, subject to the implementation of safe management measures

·         Up to prevailing group size limit of 5 customers per group

·         At least 1 metre spacing between groups of 5 or fewer customers (prevailing group size) at all times

 

E.g. Product launches, store openings and marketing and branding events at enterprise’s retail premises.

 

 

·      Up to 50 persons (including all persons and vendors except venue staff) at any time

 

or

 

·      The maximum number of individuals the room or venue may accommodate to ensure a distance of at least one metre between any 2 individuals, whichever is lower

 

·      Up to prevailing group size limit of 5 customers per group

 

 

·      At least 1 metre spacing between groups of 5 or fewer customers (prevailing group size) at all times.

 

 

E.g. Product launches, roadshows fairs, marketing and branding events at hotel function rooms

 

Roadshows/ fairs are not allowed at public transport nodes, HDB areas, mall atriums, etc. These events are only permitted in hired function centres.  

 

 

*Please note that the prevailing respective sector specific requirements and Safe Management Measures under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Control Order) Regulations 2020 and the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Performances and Other Activities – Control Order) Regulations 2020 continue to apply.

Workplace events which are substantially recreational or social in nature (such as gala dinners, networking functions, company D&Ds) are currently not permitted.

Eating and drinking should be avoided at these events as these activities require masks to be removed which raises the risk of COVID-19 transmission. However, if meals are necessary, attendees must be seated and served individually and minimise contact with one another while eating or drinking. Safe distancing also needs to be maintained during the meal. Meal durations should be kept short to minimise the period that individuals are unmasked, and the meal should not be a main feature of the event. Any pre-recorded music, speech or sound played at these events should not exceed 60 decibels in any part of the room or place where food or drinks are served or consumed.  Higher risk activities such as singing, and the playing of wind/brass instruments are also not allowed to resume at corporate/enterprise events.

Please see details on the updated Requirements for Safe Management Measures (SMMs) at the Workplace by the Ministry of Manpower here. Separately, you may find the FAQs on Workplace SMMs here.

3.      Are events permissible at third party venues such as F&B establishments?

a.     With effect from 22 October 2020, work-related events (including customer-facing events) can take place in third party venues. This includes F&B establishments which could be rented as function centres for purposes of these events.

(i)     Non customer-facing events:

  • These are subject to a cap of 50 persons or lower depending on venue capacity and must comply with safe distancing measures. Prevailing SMMs as indicated in MOM’s Requirements for Safe Management Measures at the workplace continue to apply.
  • Ensure at least one metre spacing between individuals at all times.
  • If food and drinks are provided, attendees must be seated, served individually, and minimise contact with one another while unmasked. Meal durations should be kept short to minimise the period that individuals are unmasked.

(ii)    Customer-facing events:

  • Events organised by F&B establishments within their own F&B premises are subject to the maximum number of individuals that the venue may accommodate after safe distancing measures are adhered to.
  • Events organised by external parties at F&B establishments (where the F&B premise now functions as a third-party venue) are subject to a cap of 50 persons (exclude premise staff) or lower depending on venue capacity and they must comply with safe distancing measures. Each group must be limited to 5 or fewer persons, with at least one-metre spacing between groups. If food and drinks are provided, attendees must be seated, served individually, and minimise contact with one another while unmasked. Meal durations should be kept short to minimise the period that individuals are unmasked.

b.     Meals should not be the main feature of these events. Guidelines on entertainment must be adhered to. Any pre-recorded music, speech or sound played at these events should not exceed 60 decibels in any part of the room or place where food or drinks are served or consumed.

c.     As a best practice, only one event should be held in the outlet at a time. If not feasible, each third-party event should be clearly demarcated from the others, as well as from the main consumer dine-in area. Each area should be completely separated from the others by either a solid partition (at least 1.8-metre high, from wall to wall); or at least a 3-metre space, demarcated by continuous physical barriers (e.g. plexiglass screens, barricade tape, queue pole stands). There should be no mixing or intermingling of guests from separate events.

d.     Prevailing SMMs as indicated in MOM’s Requirements for Safe Management Measures at the workplace continue to apply.

e.     Please refer to Enterprise Singapore (ESG)’s website for the latest updates here.

 

B: MICE EVENT PILOTS

4.    How can we start organising a MICE event under STB’s MICE event pilots?

a.    For applications of MICE events of up to 250 pax under the STB MICE events pilots, Event Organisers and Event Venues (collectively, EOs) must submit a joint application, including an event proposal to STB.

b.    EOs must demonstrate the readiness and capabilities to implement the Safe Management Measures (SMMs) required to meet the five outcomes to pilot MICE events in a safe and controlled manner.

c.     STB and the Ministry of Trade and Industry (“MTI”) will review the submitted event proposal and EOs may proceed only upon obtaining MTI’s approval.

c.     Event Organisers may continue to apply with STB to pilot MICE events of up to 250 persons under the Safe Business Events Framework.

 

STB MICE Events Pilots

Adherence to Safe Business Events (SBE) Framework

Location

Third Party Venues

(eg: External event venues such as function rooms in hotels or attractions)

Event Type

Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, Exhibitions

·         Not consumer facing (B2C) (e.g. roadshows, product launches, fairs, marketing and branding events etc.)

·         Not predominantly social in nature

Examples

A B2B event attended by professionals or business entities to exchange knowledge or to discuss a particular subject, a trade association convening for an education session or panel discussion etc.

Pax

Up to 5 zones (250 pax)

Zone/Cohorts/ Groups

·      Limited to ≤ 20 pax per cohort

·      Limited to ≤ 50 pax per zone

·      Up to 5 zones of 50 pax each

Safe Management Measures (SMMs)

Comply with STB’s Safe Business Events (SBE) Framework

 

Approval

Event organiser and event venue must submit a joint application and event proposal for STB’s assessment. If STB is satisfied with the proposal, the Ministry of Trade and Industry (“MTI”) will give the EOs approval to carry out the event.

 

5.    How do I apply? How long is the application process?

a.    The application form must be jointly completed by both the Event Organiser and Event Venue (collectively, EOs).

b.    Please use the Industry Self Help Checklist to check if your event falls under the purview of STB MICE event pilots by going through the checklist before putting in an application. Industry Self Help Checklist can be found here. We strongly encourage EOs to put in their applications as early as possible (preferably 3 months in advance) to cater sufficient time for planning, registration and marketing. Minimally, EOs should submit their application at least 1 month before the event date.

c.     Each MICE event and its related marketing efforts may be carried out only after receiving approval from STB and MTI.  

d.    Please note that STB and MTI will take up to 14 business days to assess each application.

e.    Please send the completed application form as well as your event proposal to secb@stb.gov.sg.The  application form and details of the  SMMs required under the “expansion of MICE pilot events in Singapore” can be found here.

f.      STB has started accepting applications from 1 October 2020.

6.    Can I apply for my event (up to 250 pax) which is scheduled for the later part of the year (Dec 2020 onwards) to resume? I would need to start event planning, production and marketing.

a.    Yes. Event Organisers and Event Venues (collectively, EOs) must submit their application and event proposal at least 1 month prior to the commencement of each MICE event. STB and MTI will take up to 14 business days to assess each application. As such, EOs are encouraged to put in their applications as early as possible (preferably 3 months in advance) to cater sufficient time for planning, registration and marketing.

b.    STB has started accepting applications from 1 October 2020.

7.    Are there limitations to the event venues allowed under the STB MICE event pilots?

a.      There is no restriction to the types of event venues allowed as long as the venues can be hired as a function centre and is able to comply with SG Clean standards as well as implement measures under the Safe Business Events Framework.

8.    Can foreign delegates attend MICE events in Singapore?

a.        Singapore has implemented travel arrangements with some countries to facilitate travel while safeguarding public health.

b.        Foreign delegates from these countries may submit their request to enter Singapore through such arrangements to attend the approved MICE pilot events.

c.         Please refer to ICA’s website for the list of countries and the respective requirements here.

9.    Do event organisers need to confirm the venue before submitting the application form?

a.        Yes, the application will need to be jointly submitted by the Event Organiser and Event Venue (collectively, EOs). This includes an event proposal to be submitted to STB.

b.        The event proposal must detail how the SMMs are achieved within the proposed event venue. Any application received without this information will be rejected.

If the venue is changed after the application is submitted or approved, EOs will need to re-submit the event proposal. Should this happen, please note that the application processing time will also be affected.

10.  What would these SMMs (e.g. cohorts of 50pax) look like for tradeshows?

a.    As announced on 7 September 2020, The Alliance for Action on Enabling Safe and Innovative Visitor Experiences, an industry-led coalition, has developed a prototype for safe tradeshows and exhibitions, which will be tested out at a new event in November called TravelRevive – powered by ITB Asia & STB.

b.    As more insights and data are obtained through such pilot events, STB will work with the MICE industry to adapt and adjust our protocols for safe exhibitions and tradeshows. The resumption of more events in the MICE sector will be dependent on the success of the pilot events and the ability and readiness of the event owners and organisers to implement the necessary safe management measures effectively, taking into account the local health situation. More information on this will be shared in due course.

11.  When will large scale business events be allowed to resume?

a.      Since 1 October 2020, STB has begun accepting applications for organisers to pilot MICE events of up to 5 zones of 50 attendees (250 pax) with attendees to be divided into cohorts of 20 in Singapore. Organisers who intend to pilot events with up to 250 attendees must demonstrate their ability to implement Safe Management Measures to meet a set of health and safety outcomes.[1]

b.      The safe resumption of MICE events requires close coordination and partnership between public and private sector stakeholders. Given the need to act quickly and decisively in order for our economy to emerge stronger from the COVID-19 crisis, the Emerging Stronger Taskforce[2] (EST) under the Future Economy Council (FEC) has convened the Singapore Together Alliances for Action (“Alliances”), which are industry-led, Government-supported coalitions that will act quickly by prototyping ideas on key opportunity areas for Singapore.

c.       Recognising health and safety as key imperatives, the Alliance on Enabling Safe and Innovative Visitor Experiences has developed a prototype for safe tradeshows and exhibitions – these are larger events which would not have been permitted to resume in their pre-COVID-19 format. The prototype has been developed in partnership with the private sector and will provide delegates with the degree of interaction they would normally be accustomed to in a regular tradeshow setting – but in a far safer way which minimises infection risks. This will be first tested at a new event in November called TravelRevive – powered by ITB Asia & STB.

d.      STB will only be able to advise on the general resumption of large-scale events after the successful conclusion of the pilot events.

 

C: OTHER EVENT RELATED QUERIES

12.  What is the role of the Event Organiser and Event Venue? Who would be penalised in the event of a contravention?

a.      Both the Event Organiser and Event Venue are jointly responsible for the events taking place under their purview. In the event of any contravention, Enforcement Officers will investigate the facts and circumstances leading to the contravention to determine which party is liable, or if both parties are liable.

13.  As a venue operator, can I have multiple events at my venue?

a.    Yes. In the event of multiple concurrent events taking place in the same facility (more than 930sqm), the event venue must ensure that the overall density capacity requirement of at least 10sqm per attendee must be met.

b.    If the overall event facility demarcated for use by events is less than 930sqm, your event venue is not bound by the operating capacity of 10sqm per attendee. Please note that you will need to comply with the Safe Business Events Framework.

The event venue and respective EOs must work out a plan to stagger the movement of attendees within each zone to ensure that attendees of each zone would not be able to intermingle with attendees from other zones.

14.  Are venues allowed to accept bookings for permitted enterprises to conduct examinations, tests or for the purpose of assessment?

a.      Yes, examinations, assessments for professional or vocational training, testing, certification or accreditation; or tests, examinations or other methods of assessing the level of proficiency, aptitude, skill, knowledge or understanding of an individual in any subject matter are permitted to take place at external venues for up to 50 pax per room.

b.      Please ensure at least 1 metre spacing between groups (currently 5 individuals per group) at all times.

15.  Are live performances permitted at MICE event pilots?

a.    Live performances are currently not permitted as part of the overall programming for the MICE event pilots.

16.  Are live performances allowed at event venues and hotels?

a.  With effect from 1 November 2020, permitted venues may host indoor live performances of up to two zones of 50 audience members, if they can adhere to the zoning requirements.

b.  Venue owners/managers should log onto MTI’s Go Business portal from 1 November 2020 with your CorpPass to confirm that your venue is permitted to host an indoor live performance.

c.   For further details on permitted venues and zoning requirements, please refer to NAC’s website for the latest updates on Resumption of Indoor Live Performance here.

d.   NAC and STB are accepting pilot applications for (a) indoor live performances of up to 250 audience members (five zones of 50 audience members); and (b) outdoor live performances of up to 100 audience members (two zones of 50 audience members). Please refer to details on the application process here.

17.  Can media content productions, filming, livestream, broadcast events take place in event venues? Does my venue need to seek approval from Government to accept this booking?

a.      For companies involved in the production of programmes for broadcast and other digital media, such as TV commercials, short narratives, documentaries, feature films, requiring large crew: no more than 50 personnel on location, including no more than 20 onscreen talent/performers unmasked, at any given time.  These companies are to register with IMDA. No live singing is allowed at this production size.

b.      For companies involved in all other productions: no more than 30 personnel on location, including no more than 10 onscreen talent/performers unmasked at any given time.

c.       For “live” singing as part of the production, all productions must adhere to no more than 30 personnel on location, including no more than 5 onscreen talent/performers singing unmasked at any given time, and must observe a 2-metre safe distancing from the next person.

d.          Unmasking dispensations are to be kept strictly to the fixed cast of onscreen talent/performers (not interchangeable with other non-onscreen performing roles) for the entire production.

e.      Please refer to IMDA guidelines on the requirements here.

 

D: FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR MICE EOs

18.  What are some of the financial assistance available for EOs?

              i.        Marketing and Visitor Experience

a.    MICE Event Organisers (EO) can tap on the Marketing Partnership Programme (MPP). This programme aims to support MICE EOs in their international marketing initiatives, market and maintain international presence and position Singapore as the choice destination for business events. The programme also supports EOs in their marketing efforts for virtual or hybrid events with the aim of driving international attendance for their next physical event in Singapore.

b.    EOs with new products and experiences which will improve the overall visitor experience and increase the attractiveness of Singapore to visitors can tap on the Experience Step-Up Fund (ESF). Some examples include the development of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) products which showcase Singapore during the conference, contactless technology which enhance delegate experience etc.

            ii.        Technology and Innovation

c.     Separately, there is the Productivity Solutions Grant (PSG) under Enterprise Singapore (ESG) which encourages enterprises to continue digitalisation and productivity upgrading efforts. EOs can refer to the list of supportable solutions and identify relevant solutions that best suit your business needs on the PSG website. Some of the pre-scoped IT solutions and equipment include virtual meeting and telephony tools, temperature screening solutions, video analytics for crowd management, autonomous floor cleaner, fleet management, etc to support local enterprises in their digitalisation and productivity efforts.

d.    If you’re taking this period to rethink your company’s current business models or redesign your work processes to be more efficient, there is the Business Improvement Fund (BIF) which aims to encourage technology innovation and adoption to improve productivity and competitiveness. Companies could also leverage on technologies and customised solutions to make routine tasks more efficient. These could include the development of an integrated e-registration system to serve the needs of your clients, automation of cleaning processes at event venues which integrates Artificial Intelligence (AI) navigation to clean floors without human intervention, or customised hybrid meeting solutions which enable simultaneous broadcast of multiple sessions on a single platform etc.

           iii.        Financing Schemes

e.    Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) can also consider the Enterprise Financing Scheme – SME Working Capital Loan (EFS-WCL) and Temporary Bridging Loan Programme under Enterprise Singapore to seek help with working capital and cashflow needs.

 

[1] An example of some outcomes to be achieved include: implementing infection control measures for pre and post event; limiting overall density of attendees, especially in enclosed places; and limiting opportunities and number of close contacts between individuals

[2] The Emerging Stronger Taskforce (EST) was formed under the Future Economy Council (FEC) to review how Singapore can stay economically resilient and build new sources of dynamism to emerge stronger from COVID-19. The EST is co-chaired by Minister for National Development, Mr Desmond Lee and Group CEO of PSA International, Mr Tan Chong Meng, and comprises 15 members from various sectors, including businesses and trade associations and chambers.

 

Cruise

Singapore has ceased port calls for all cruise vessels. For further information on enhanced measures for cruise lines, please contact MPA Port Operation Control Centre at 62213127 or email the Cruise Division from STB at STB_CRUISE@stb.gov.sg.

1. Should we give refunds to passengers who cancel their cruise bookings because of COVID-19?

Under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Bill, businesses and individuals who are unable to perform their contractual obligations due on or after 1 February 2020 because of COVID-19, will be given time to work out a solution with the other party without the threat or uncertainty of litigation or legal proceedings.

This provides temporary relief from legal action for up to six months. To claim relief, one party to a contract should serve a notification for relief on the other party.

However, it does not mean that obligations are postponed or are absolved. Parties may still be charged interest or penalties if they delay in performance or fail to perform.

This Bill applies to specific contracts entered into or renewed before 25 March 2020.

For the full list of specific contracts covered under this Bill, or for more information, please refer to the Ministry of Law’s website or STB’s website.

Attractions

1. Are attractions allowed to re-open?

As part of the resumption of activities in Phase 2 after the Circuit Breaker, tourism businesses in Singapore will be permitted to resume operations in stages from 1 July. 

All attractions must submit their re-opening proposals to STB for assessment prior to re-opening, and may resume operations only after receiving approval from the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI). Attractions should submit their re-opening proposals to STB_Attractions@stb.gov.sg. Please refer to the advisory for attractions for the full list of requirements.

The list of permitted attractions can be found here.

Retail

1. Are retail establishments allowed to re-open?

Most retail establishments have reopened their physical outlets. Large public venues with high human traffic such as malls and standalone retail outlets are subject to capacity limits and operators are required to prevent crowds or long queues from building up within and in the immediate vicinity of their premises.

The list of businesses that are allowed to resume can be found here: https://covid.gobusiness.gov.sg/permittedlist/. Retail establishments that are permitted to remain open must implement Safe Management Measures, as required by the Ministry of Manpower and comply with the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Control Order) Regulations. In addition, retail establishments are required to comply with the measures set out here.

Dining

1. Which F&B outlets are allowed to open?

For Phase 2:

  • Standalone F&B establishments predominantly selling beverages can resume operations
  • F&B establishments[1] can provide dine-in services, provided there is no provision of Public Entertainment[2]
  • Sales and consumption of alcohol in all F&B establishments is prohibited after 2230 hours. This includes consumption at any outdoor refreshment area (ORA) and/or tables/chairs owned or managed by such establishment[3].

However, live music and television and video screenings are not allowed in all F&B outlets.

You can refer to https://covid.gobusiness.gov.sg/permittedlist/ to check if your business may resume. F&B establishments that are permitted to operate must implement Safe Management Measures, as required by the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) and comply with the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) (Control Order) Regulations. In addition, F&B establishments must comply with the measures set out here.

[1]These would be F&B establishments that are issued food shop licences by SFA, with the exception of those with SFA food shop licences under the Pubs, Bars, Nightclubs and Discos categories.

[2] Public Entertainment activities are as per defined under the Public Entertainments Act.

[3] The furniture should be kept/secured in such manner after close of business.

Entertainment

1. When will entertainment establishments be allowed to re-open?

Cinemas are allowed to reopen but they must adhere to the safe management measures for cinemas.  

Entertainment venues such as bars, nightclubs, karaoke outlets and theatres are still not allowed to reopen due to safe management considerations. The Government will help these businesses transition to other activities or ease their exit. More details will be provided by the Ministry of Trade and Industry.