Latest contractor travel update: Good news for Singapore

Contractor travel update - Singapore

5th November 2020

The on-going pandemic looks set to have an impact on travel movements for the foreseeable future. With Germany and France announcing national lockdowns again and other regional changes to restrictions being announced regularly, staying ahead of the latest travel restrictions is challenging to say the least.

Here’s the latest contractor travel update from Schengen Visa Info (note, this information is correct as of the end of October).

Norway recommends avoiding travel to Sweden

Authorities in Norway urged its citizens in the last week of October to avoid non-essential travel to Sweden due to the increasing number of cases being reported in the country. This follows the move of Sweden’s Falmar region into the red category – the last region in the location to be moved into the high-risk classification. This means that anyone attempting to travel into Norway from Falmar will need to comply with a ten-day mandatory quarantine.

Other countries that Norway’s government classify as ‘unsafe’ to travel to and from are; Belgium, Andorra, Bulgaria, France, Estonia, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Croatia, Italy, Cyprus, Liechtenstein, Latvia, Lithuania, Monaco, Malta, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

Contractor travel update for Denmark

Danish authorities have also revealed that as of 28th October, anyone travelling to Denmark from

countries which are listed as ‘high-risk’ destinations will need to present a negative Covid-19 test that has been performed no more than 72 hours before entering the country.

Failure to provide this will result in individuals being rejected at the border. A full list of the destinations classified as high-risk can be found here – this is regularly updated so it is advisable to check this often if you’re planning on making a move to the country soon.

Italy urges citizens to stay in the country

The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation also published guidance towards the end of October urging its citizens to avoid travel across borders unless it is absolutely necessary. This advice applies to travel to EU member states and beyond, as Italy continues to battle the spread of the virus.

The country currently has a state of emergency in place covering the entire nation until the end of January next year. Movement limitations have been instigated as a result of this which means that where it is essential to travel, restrictions are in place from a number of locations. Anyone entering Italy from Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Czech Republic, Spain, United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, for example, will be required to take a test 72 hours before arrival or within 48 hours of reaching the destination.

Singapore ‘epidemiologically safe’

In more positive news, Singapore has been added to the European Union Council’s latest updated list of epidemiologically safe third-countries. This means that Singaporean residents are permitted to travel to the EU for non-essential purposes such as leisure and tourism.

However, while Singapore has been added to this safe list, unfortunately Canada, Georgia and Tunisia have been removed following a spike in cases. As of 22nd October, the EU Council’s safe list included:

  • Australia
  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • Rwanda
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • Thailand
  • Uruguay
  • China, subject to confirmation of reciprocity

Lithuania removes some testing requirements

Lithuania has also reported positive steps, with quarantine rules for six countries removed last week. The country’s government moved Estonia, Latvia, Norway, Finland, Denmark and Cyprus to the yellow list, meaning that citizens from these locations do not need to undergo quarantine or testing procedures when entering the destination.

According to Lithuania’s Ministry of Health, countries on the yellow list are those where the morbidity ranges from 25 to 150 cases per 100 thousand population, in the last two weeks. Those in the higher risk – or red – zones are those that are reporting 50 or more cases per 100,000 population, during the past two weeks.

Planning for the uncertainty

While the testing requirements that each country has in place are varied and will continuously change, our advice to contractors gearing up for an international move is to get a test where possible even if it isn’t currently a necessity. With authorities altering the list of countries that will require travellers to present a negative test rapidly, individuals could find themselves scrambling for a last-minute test and potentially being turned away at the border without the correct certificate.

Remaining compliant no matter where you’re working

Travel restrictions will no doubt adapt and change as global governments continue to attempt to control the spread of Coronavirus. And while uncertainty may be the new normal for now, there’s one thing that contractors can bet on: tax compliance requirements are becoming tougher.

International authorities have long been introducing more stringent measures to prevent tax fraud and for contractors seeking international opportunities, staying on the right side of the law at home and in your country of work is complex to say the least. But international projects can often be lucrative. So, why not let an expert focus on keeping you compliant while you attend to the job in hand?

Contact our team of tax specialists today to find out how they can assist you with your current and future projects.

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