2 AUGUST 2021
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The New Zealand – Australia trans-Tasman travel bubble has been suspended “for at least the next eight weeks”, as the number of Covid-19 cases in Australia rises.
Flights were not curtailed immediately, a period of respite introduced to enable people from both countries to make the return.
Quarantine travel between the two countries was launched in April, but had already been paused by several Australian states earlier last month including New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.
Announcing the move New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said: “There are now multiple outbreaks, and in differing stages of containment, that have forced three states into lockdown. The health risk to New Zealanders from these cases is increasing.
“We’ve always said that our response would evolve as the virus evolved. This is not a decision we have taken lightly, but it is the right decision to keep New Zealanders safe.
“Now is the time for a suspension to ensure New Zealanders aren’t put at undue risk from Covid-19 and to ensure we retain our hard won gains. Our team of five million has worked hard to put us in a strong position both health-wise and economically. We will not risk that.
“We do want the bubble to resume. We remain committed to it, and when I spoke to PM Scott Morrison I conveyed this view directly. But it must be safe.”
All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum
George James, London
What I want to know is when will Oz open up from the UK? It seems to me if both governments can agree on the rules Heathrow to Perth is the obvious starter route with no third country involved. I’ve flown the sector and it was busy. I am sure it will be a real hit.