Join Hafta-Ichi to find out the article “Scott Morrison says New Zealand travellers will be able to visit ‘very soon’ | World news”
The prime minister, Scott Morrison, says Australia will open its border with New Zealand “very soon”.
Morrison told Adelaide radio station 5AA on Thursday that Kiwis will soon be allowed to fly into Australia with no requirement to complete a two-week quarantine, but said New Zealand was unlikely to reciprocate immediately.
“We’ll be able to move on that very soon,” he said. “New Zealanders being able to travel to Australia – that’s good for Australian tourism.”
Morrison said this would also help ease pressure on the international hotel quarantine system that has meant thousands of Australians trapped overseas are unable to return.
“[It] frees up more places for Australians to come home,” he said.
The prime minister said South Australia and New South Wales would be the first to benefit from new Kiwi travellers, suggesting states insisting on quarantine for domestic travel would not be included in the bubble.
“We can’t have New Zealand tourists coming and taking up those quarantine places in those states,” he said.
It is unclear if prospective New Zealand tourists would be required to quarantine on their return home, but a fully functional trans-Tasman bubble appears to be some way off.
Victoria’s death toll has reached 800 as the state recorded two more deaths and 15 new cases of Covid-19. Thursday’s fatalities included a woman in her 70s and one in her 90s.
Though case numbers have been stuck in the teens for several days, Melbourne’s 14-day rolling average continues to fall, now sitting at 15.6, and 0.3 in regional Victoria.
Seven of Thursday’s new cases were linked to known outbreaks and eight were still under investigation.
On Wednesday health officials raised the alarm in the coastal town of Anglesea after viral fragments were found in wastewater. The deputy chief health officer, Dr Allen Cheng, confirmed a second sewage test had shown further evidence of the virus, suggesting that a resident is – or was – infected, rather than a tourist just passing through.
“This could mean that there is someone with active infection in the area of Anglesea, but it could mean there is someone who has recovered from infection who is in Anglesea and we can’t tell the difference from testing,” he said.
Cheng also urged anyone with mild symptoms in the suburb of Frankston to get tested after a cluster from the Chadstone shopping centre spread further south.
“We have a bit of a situation in Frankston that is linked to the Chadstone cases. There have been eight cases in the fresh food part of Chadstone … There has been a case that has worked there from 23 to 28 September so any people that have been into that area over that time, if they have the slightest symptoms if you could please come forward to be tested,” he said.
It’s understood the virus had spread to at least one Frankston household.
Further north, NSW recorded its sixth consecutive day with no community transmission of Covid-19.
While the state recorded one locally acquired case on Thursday, the NSW premier, Gladys Berejiklian, said that was a historic infection. The man in his 50s from south-west Sydney was retested as a pre-work assessment and was found to have “remnants” of Covid-19, she said.
NSW Health said a repeat negative swab test and positive serology results showed the man had an immune response to the virus and the case was most likely acquired when the virus was circulating at low levels in south-western Sydney about July.
Two other cases were recorded on Thursday, but both were returned travellers in hotel quarantine. In the past nine days, the state has recorded only one new locally acquired case.
Meanwhile, Berejiklian is under pressure to ease restrictions in regional NSW areas, some of which have gone months without a coronavirus case.
The premier flagged restrictions, specifically in hospitality, could soon be eased, but not until after the NSW school holidays end on 12 October.
Queensland border restrictions also eased further on Thursday, with long lines forming at checkpoints as the sunshine state extended its border bubble region to five additional NSW shires.
NSW residents who live in the border region are now allowed to travel freely in Queensland, provided they carry a border pass and declare they have not travelled to a hotspot in the last 14 days – this includes the remainder of NSW and Victoria.
Queensland residents can also travel in the NSW border region without needing to quarantine upon return.
Previously 41 postcodes along the border were included, but from 1am Thursday this was extended to include the local government areas of Byron shire, Ballina, the city of Lismore, Richmond Valley and Glen Innes.
The Queensland police Chief Superintendent Mark Wheeler told media that cars had been queuing since before 1am.
“This is our 15th iteration of border restriction changes, so the public have gotten used to it … I just ask for people to be patient and plan their journey accordingly,” he said.
“Of course, we will see some line-ups that will probably extend hundreds of metres down the road … At the moment we are seeing some delays to about 30 minutes and that is understandable.”
Wheeler suggested it would be a “rocky” first few days on the border with school holidays in both states and a long weekend increasing traffic.
Source: The Guardian
Keyword: Scott Morrison says New Zealand travellers will be able to visit ‘very soon’ | World news