Border closures ‘artificial’: NSW premier

NSW has recorded two COVID-19 cases from a record of almost 17,400 tests, with authorities warning residents to avoid letting their guard down.

Both coronavirus cases were in returned travellers in quarantine, NSW Health reports, and no patients are currently in intensive care.

“We have seen elsewhere (that) if people let their guard down, don’t come forward and get tested when they have the milder symptoms, then breakouts can occur and distress can be caused,” Premier Gladys Berejiklian said on Thursday.

“I would just ask everybody to keep working hard, keeping vigilant.”

Ms Berejiklian also rejected the idea of restricting movement between NSW and Victoria, with the latter state reporting 18 new cases on Thursday.

She labelled domestic Australian border closures “artificial” and said they were thwarting movement, business and family reconnection at a difficult time.

“I don’t begrudge the Victorians that – it’s not a reason to close borders with them,” she said.

Ms Berejiklian’s comments follow her description of NSW’s exclusion from a South Australian travel bubble, including Western Australia, the Northern Territory and Tasmania, as “crazy”.

Residents of those states and territories will no longer be required to quarantine for 14 days when they arrive in SA for business or holidays.

“None of this makes sense to me,” Ms Berejiklian said on Wednesday.

At this stage, SA plans to lift border restrictions related to NSW, Queensland and Victoria on July 20. However, it could be looking at an earlier date for Queensland.

Ms Berejiklian has repeatedly expressed her displeasure with intrastate border closures, notably those of Queensland, which has caused problems for NSW border towns such as Tweed Heads.

The NSW government, meanwhile, will from July 1 lift coronavirus-related guidelines on daily capacity across the public transport network to 1.3 million, up from about 875,000 but below the full 2.2 million capacity.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.