The government is introducing additional anti-Covid-19 measures harking back to “Phase 2”, as the number of unlinked community cases continue to rise, heightening risks of another outbreak if not curbed in time.

With effect from May 8 through May 30, social gatherings will be capped at five, down from eight now. The number of distinct visitors to other households will be capped at five as well.

Also, employers must ensure that no more than 50% of employees who are able to work from home return to the workplace at any time – down from 75% now.

Employers should also continue to stagger start times of employees who need to return to the workplace, and implement flexible working hours. Social gatherings at the workplace should be avoided as well.

SEE:Resumption of 'Phase 2' measures unlikely to be a substantial drag on economy: Barclays

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To reduce risks of community transmission, indoor gyms, health studios etc are to be closed, as these are small enclosed spaces where people exercise unmasked. Tighter border measures, including a longer quarantine period, will be implemented too.

Lawrence Wong (picture, credit: MCI), co-chair of the Covid-19 multi-ministry task force, said that these new measures will take Singapore back to Phase 2 for a few weeks.

However, he said the new measures should not be seen as a “circuit breaker” – where much tighter curbs were in place for three months last year, sending the economy into its steepest dive ever. “We certainly hope not to have to invoke another circuit breaker," he said.

Over the past week, 60 new cases with infection from multiple variants, have been identified.