SINGAPORE - The rules disallowing home-based bakers from operating during the coronavirus circuit breaker may be eased if community transmission numbers are brought down, said Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong.
Speaking at a multi-ministry task force press conference on Monday (April 27), he said: "Current rules do not allow for home-based F&B, but if and when community numbers do continue to come down, as we said, we're going to review the numbers.
"And if the numbers are brought down, we may very well relax some of the restrictions, and at that time, we will let Singaporeans know when this or any other activities that we think can start will be able to resume."
Home bakeries are not allowed to operate under the enhanced circuit breaker measures, according to the Housing Board website.
It states that home-based businesses have to cease operations if they require the owner to leave the residential premises or have third-party services deliver the goods, among other measures. Customers are also not allowed to collect the goods themselves.
The issue arose after a report in Malay-language paper Berita Harian last Saturday noted that home bakers cannot operate if they involve delivery services, which are typical for online home-based businesses. The issue is of particular concern in the Malay community right now as such businesses are an important source of income for many during the month of Ramadan.
"We have explained why we had to tighten up the rules during this period all the way to May 4, why it is necessary and why these are requirements that all of us have to cooperate with and work together on," said Mr Wong.
"There will be some sacrifices, not easy but we call on everyone to hunker down until May 4 at least, because we want to bring community numbers down decisively.
"In recent days we have seen some continued decline in local transmission numbers, but we want to go all out to bring them down."
Singapore confirmed 799 new Covid-19 cases on Monday, taking the total count to 14,423.
This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.
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