Newsletter Singapore May 2021
Preface by our Senior Trade Officer
I have felt very privileged to produce and act in one of the King’s Day “Gratitude Videos” to thank a Singaporean dignitary, a very warm friend of the Netherlands, Mr. Khoo Teng Chye, Practicing Professor at the Faculty of Engineering, National University of Singapore. We chose the Marina Barrage for the video setting because it is an apt symbol of Dutch design and water technology. Mr. Khoo and his Public Utilities Board (PUB) team were responsible for building this dam in 2005 that provides water storage, flood control and recreation, earning an international award in 2009. It is in his 2nd nature to promote the Netherlands, be it for water management, port management or city master-planning. He facilitated countless high-level official Dutch visitors to Singapore and he is always willing to connect these delegations to Singaporean Governmental Agencies and Knowledge Institutes, building a mutually beneficial relationship between the 2 countries.
Since the Singapore International Water Week (SIWW) will be coming up in June, I am happy to help the Embassy to be a key driver to all the Dutch stakeholders showcasing the Netherlands Water Sector during the SIWW Online from 21 June to 2 July. Find out more about this major event in this newsletter.
Stay well and keep safe. If you need the Embassy’s support, we are here to help.
CONSULAR NEWS AND EVENTS
Traveling to the Netherlands:
The Netherlands is open for non-essential travel from Singapore, as Singapore is on the EU list of safe countries. It does not matter what the purpose of your journey is or what nationality you hold. This also means that upon arrival in the Netherlands, there is currently no need to quarantine or to show a negativetest result when you travel to the Netherlands.
Regular visa requirements and border procedures do apply. Consult with your airline before you travel, as they may have implemented additional/new requirements for your flight.
For more information about travelling to the Netherlands from Singapore, click here & here.
Always check the website of the region and/or city you are travelling to.
– News on the Corona Virus COVID-19
– Current information about COVID-19, RIVM
– Coronavirus dashboard
Information concerning traveling/returning to Singapore:
In view of the resurgence of COVID-19 cases in several countries and emergence of new virus variants, the Singapore Government:
Reduced entry approvals for work pass holders (including their dependants) entering Singapore in the coming weeks (from 8 May – 5 July 2021). This means that some work pass holders who had earlier obtained entry approvals to enter prior to July 5 will not be allowed to enter and will have to reschedule their arrival. However, the changes do not apply to people from lower-risk areas who are seeking, or have already been given, entry approval, as well as those under the periodic commuting arrangement, reciprocal green lane and other approved travel lanes. All countries and regions are considered to be at higher risk, except Australia, Brunei, New Zealand, the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong and Macau.
All inbound travelers (including children below 12 years old) who are not Singapore Citizens or Permanent Residents, except those from lower-risk countries/regions, will need to take a COVID-19 PCR test within 72 hours before departure. These travelers will be required to serve their 21-day SHN at a SHN Dedicated Facility upon arrival in Singapore and will be tested twice before the 21-day SHN is over.
More information for returning Work Pass holders and their dependants (here & here)
and for returning Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents (here & here).
Implemented measures that are very similar to phase 2 to address the increasing number of COVID-19 community cases. The new measures that will be effective from 16 May – 13 June 2021: Reduced group size, Work from home as default, No dine-in, Cessation of Indoor “Mask-Off” Activities, Reduced event size and mall capacity, Enhanced testing. Furthermore the government has announced that schools will move to home-based learning from Wednesday 19 May.
Vaccination program Singapore
Singapore, like the Netherlands, is in the process of rolling out its vaccination program. Last week, the Ministry of Health (MoH) announced that the vaccination program will be extended to people between the age of 40 and 45. They can register via this link.
MoH also announced that the interval between the first and second vaccination will be extended to 6 to 8 weeks.
Health Minister Ong Ye Kung also stated that the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine has been approved by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) to be applied to children between 12 and 15 years old. The Dutch government follows the advice of the EMA (European Medicines Agency). On this website by the EU, you will find information about their approved vaccines and age groups.
Policy change Letter of Consent (LoC)
The Ministry of Manpower (MoM) has announced that from May 1 2021 onwards, spouses and family members of those working in Singapore who hold Dependant’s Passes (DPs) will need to obtain a work pass in order to work here after the expiry of their current LoC. The Embassy and ADB-DutchCham have been working with Dutch and European partner organizations to assess the impact of this policy change and we have indicated this to the MoM. The MoM has clarified how they will implement the new rules, which can be found through this link. DPs will, in a wider range of cases, be able to apply for work permits. While some restrictions will be eased for DPs, quotas and levies will apply. We will continue to work collaboratively on this matter with the Singapore government. Should you have any questions, please contact the Embassy (Contact form) or mail firstname.lastname@example.org
TRADE AND INNOVATION NEWS & EVENTS
Final call for Singapore & Dutch AI projects!
The deadline for the EUREKA Clusters AI Call 2021 will be closing on the 28th of June! The call aims to support collaborative AI projects. In total 13 countries are participating, the goal is to boost productivity and competitiveness of industries through the adoption and use of AI systems and services. The call provides amongst others opportunity for Dutch and Singaporean collaborative AI projects. For more info, click here.
Podcasts AI in Health
The Innovation department has published two podcast episodes on the use of AI in Health. Guests are clinicians & researchers from Singapore National Eye Centre who play an important role in the digitalization & innovation landscape in Singapore. Professor Wong, Professor Tan and Professor Ting are Ophtamologists and Professor Liu, is a computer scientist at A*STAR in Singapore.
Episode 1: AI & Health on SELENA+ the AI tool to detect diabetes related eye disease and the impact of Covid of digitalization in the health care sector in Singapore
Episode 2: The tiger on the table – small and big medical data on challenges in AI implementation: patient and AI interaction, data availability, data sharing methods such as Federated learning and Singapore’s outlook on international collaboration.
Reach out to us via email@example.com or LinkedIn
Expansion tip for entrepreneurs
We asked our Regional Startup Liaison for her no1 expansion tip for entrepreneurs that they wished they had known before taking their first steps abroad.
“International expansion won’t happen overnight. But it can happen a lot faster when you surround yourself with the right people. Seek help from knowledgeable, experienced entrepreneurs who navigated through the international market before”- Gabby van Herpt, Regional Startup Liaison
For more information and insights to expand your business to Singapore, please visit the TechLeap GoGlobal website where you’ll find all the info you need; click here.
If you have questions on doing business in SEA, looking for support, connections or want to know more about the region, please feel free to contact Gabby van Herpt.
Singapore International Water Week 2021 (SIWW): 21 June to 2 July 2021
SIWW 2021 Spotlight is a one-day virtual Summit for water leaders in governments, utilities, academia and industry to prepare the water sector for emerging challenges and to provide insights on how innovation and collaboration are key enablers towards sustainable outcomes.
SIWW 2021 Online is a 2-week virtual event to allow global leaders, experts and practitioners to connect, share, learn from each other in a safe environment. It will feature close to 100 key notes, thematic webinars, technology showcases, workshops on best practices and solutions spanning the urban water cycle and a virtual expo with over 150 exhibitors with the latest cutting-edge solutions and technologies, product showcasing, knowledge sharing, learning and exchange.
Netherlands Embassy’s participation at the SIWW 2021 Online
In collaborating with Netherlands Water Partnership, and host of the Netherlands Pavilion, the Singapore Netherlands Water House members (SNWH) of ADB-DutchChamb, Dutch Consortium for Circular Economy – PIB Recirc, the Embassy will organize three “Technology to Practice Webinars” scheduled for :
25 June, 8-9pm (GMT+8) – Digital water solutions for water utilities
30 June, 9-10pm (GMT+8) – Urban Resilience Challenge/Nature-based solutions
1 July, 4-5pm (GMT+8) – Towards integrated zero waste for a circular economy
Attendance at these 3 Webinars is complimentary. Mark your calendars and join us at these 3 Webinars!
Register here for your SIWW Online complimentary Trade Visitor Pass.
PUBLIC DIPLOMACY NEWS AND EVENTS
King’s Day is about celebrating, but also about thanking those people who have contributed to society. In the Netherlands, every year some of these dedicated people are awarded a special decoration by His Majesty the King Willem-Alexander. In line with this tradition, we have featured, in a series of videos, a few remarkable people who embody the strong relationship between Singapore and the Netherlands. This video shows Senior Minister of State Dr Amy Khor and Ambassador Margriet Vonno.
4 Mei – Dodenherdenking (in Dutch)
Hoewel in gelimiteerd gezelschap, was het een mooie en waardige Dodenherdenking op de Kranji War Cemetery in Singapore. Tijdens de ceremonie droegen vier leerlingen hun eigen prachtige gedicht voor, gaven Ambassadeur Margriet Vonno en HSL-directeur Meino Meines een toespraak, gevolgd door de kranslegging, het spelen van de taptoe en twee minuten stilte. De herdenking werd afgesloten met het volkslied. Aansluitend legden de leerlingen bloemen op de graven van de gevallen soldaten. Kijk de herdenking hier terug.
EU at your school
The Embassy paid a visit to the Methodist Girls’ School. Ambassador Margriet Vonno and Customs Attaché Guusta Visser gave a presentation about the Netherlands, the EU, and its relationship with Singapore and ASEAN. This was part of the ongoing #EUatYourSchool Public Diplomacy Project organized by the Ministry of Education and European Union in Singapore. The project reaches about 30 Singapore schools.
Extra screening “The Conductor” (De Dirigent)
Due to popular demand the Netherlands Embassy has arranged an EU Film Festival 2021 ‘Encore Screening’ of the Dutch movie The Conductor (De Dirigent)! A gorgeous movie about music, bravery and gender equality. Because of the current safety measures, there will only be limited seats available, so secure your tickets here.
When: Sunday, 30 May @5.30pm
Where: The Projector
Click here for an interview with Movie Director, Maria Peters.
The Migrant – the turbulent history of a bird
The Migrant is a fable-like narrative grounded in facts, told through the character of Mynah and following his journey from his introduction into Singapore as a highly prized songbird, to his ultimate persecution when his voice changed. Due to Phase 2 ‘Heightened Alert’, Objectifs will be closed from 18 May to 1 June (contingent on the evolving situation). Therefor The Migrant will now be closed to the public, but you can view photos of the exhibition here, and click here to watch the videos featured in the exhibition.
Netherlands Embassy – Advisor for Innovation, Technology and Science
As advisor for innovation you will stimulate international collaboration between companies, research institutes and government in various fields such as health care, digitalization, circular economy. You will inform stakeholders on relevant developments, organize activities and seminars for matchmaking and help identifying funding mechanisms for collaboration. Check for more info our website, please respond before 13 June.
Netherlands Embassy – Consular Affairs Officer
As Consular Affairs Officer you will be part of the Operational Management and Consular Affairs team. You will not only provide consular services, but also inform authorities and interested third parties on legislation (and its interpretation), implement specific regulations and perform various sensitive/complex duties. Check for more info our website, please respond before 13 June.
ADB-DutchCham – Marketing & Social Media Manager
ADB-DutchCham is looking for a temporary (August – December 2021) Marketing & Social Media Manager for three days a week. In this role you will manage ADB-DutchCham’s online platforms, communication tools and drive online marketing campaigns. For the full job description, please click here.
3 June – World Cycling Day
Why celebrate the bicycle? The bicycle is an affordable, reliable, and sustainable means of transportation, which stimulates physical and mental health. The Netherlands is a country of bikes, with a population of around 17 million people, and almost 23 million bicycles! One quarter of all journeys in the Netherlands are made by bike. The global urban population will continue to grow and tackling climate change is a key concern. Cycling can play an important role. Click here to read about the Dutch cycling approach.
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