PM unveils international travel bubble, but ‘Qld misses out’

 

Scott Morrison says Pacific island nations, Japan, South Korea and Singapore are the frontrunners for an expanded international travel bubble but Queensland will miss out while its borders remain closed.

Currently only New Zealand has a travel arrangement with Australia, permitting visitors from across the Tasman to travel to NSW, the ACT, and Northern Territory.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says Pacific island nations, Japan, South Korea and Singapore are the frontrunners for an expanded international travel bubble.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison says Pacific island nations, Japan, South Korea and Singapore are the frontrunners for an expanded international travel bubble.

"The reason they won't be able to come to Queensland is because there is still a requirement for them to quarantine for two weeks in Queensland," Mr Morrison said.

"When that is no longer necessary, great, I think it will be tremendous for the Queensland economy."

Mr Morrison said he and his cabinet ministers had had discussions in the past week with leaders in the Pacific, Japan, South Korea and Singapore about allowing reciprocal travel.

"We have to go cautiously on this, very, very cautiously," he said.

"Covid-19 hasn't gone anywhere, it's still there and it is no less aggressive today than it was six months ago."

Prime Minister Scott Morrison on the LNP campaign trail in Brisbane. Picture: Sarah Marshall
Prime Minister Scott Morrison on the LNP campaign trail in Brisbane. Picture: Sarah Marshall


Mr Morrison, who has been critical of Annastacia Palaszczuk's management of Queensland's border closures, said the border reopening should be based on juggling health and the economy.

"Borders don't protect you from the virus, the virus moves," he said.

"If infections are created here in Queensland, or anywhere else for that matter, it is the testing and the tracing regimes, and of course social distancing and other Covid-safe behaviours that are really necessary.

"We only want borders to be there for as long as they have to be and only for medical reasons.

"There's no quibble with the border, the issue is they should be only be there as long as they have to be because you've got to balance the economics with the health."

Originally published as PM unveils international travel bubble, but 'Qld misses out'