New Zealand announced a three-day suspension of a non-quarantine travel contract with Australia on Saturday, and Wellington quoted “multiple” outbreaks of COVID-19 in neighboring countries.
The announcement comes when the two-week blockade begins in Sydney and the rapid outbreak of a variant of the deltacoronavirus is contained.
More than 80 cases have been reported so far in Australia’s largest cities, but recently cases have been recorded in a small number of regions in the Northern Territory, Victoria and Queensland.
“But given the high level of infectivity of what appears to be a variant of Delta and the fact that there are currently multiple community clusters (in Australia), it is correct to keep COVID-19 away from New Zealand.” Chris Hypkins, COVID-19 Response Minister of New Zealand, said.
Hypkins said he understands the inconvenience caused by the suspension, adding that New Zealand continues to work on the absence of quarantine. Travel With Australia.
He added that the suspension would give authorities time to consider measures to “make the bubble safer, such as pre-departure testing of all flights” between the two countries.
New Zealand has previously suspended five bubble agreements with individual states, but this is the first time it has completely suspended unquarantine travel from across Australia.
Both countries are one of the most successful countries in the world in containing COVID-19. New Zealand has recorded only 26 COVID-19 deaths in a population of 5 million, and Australia has recorded less than 1,000 deaths in a population of 25 million.
The Trans-Tasman travel bubble began in mid-April, more than a year after the two countries closed their borders due to a pandemic. This is welcomed as a major milestone in resuming the global travel industry.
© 2021 AFP
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