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Quarantine will not be required for international travellers in this capital city

From November 1, Sydney will open its doors to fully vaccinated international travelers without quarantine, the country’s most populous state said on Friday, allowing overseas travel to resume. As a result of the pandemic, Australia closed its borders in March 2020, allowing entry almost exclusively to citizens and permanent residents who must undergo a two-week mandatory hotel quarantine at their own expense.

New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet told reporters, ‘We don’t want to live in a hermit kingdom. We need to open to the world’. Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced earlier this month that overseas travel would be available for Australians once 80 percent of the population is fully vaccinated in that state, but would require home quarantine.

The state’s near four-month COVID-19 lockdown has done significant damage to the economy, according to Perrottet. The lockdown, he said, must end so the state can help drive economic growth. Hotel quarantine and home quarantine are histories, he said, adding that Sydney and New South Wales were opening to the world. By this weekend, New South Wales will have 80 percent of the adult population fully vaccinated, well ahead of other states and drastically lowering infection numbers. Perrottet said arriving passengers will have to show proof of vaccination and a negative COVID-19 test before entering Australia.

Morrison’s office was not immediately available for comment about the New South Wales plan. The removal of quarantine requirements will facilitate international travel into Australia, which is likely to be welcomed by airlines. On Friday, New South Wales reported 399 COVID-19 cases, a far cry from the 1,599 cases seen earlier in September, when the state hit its pandemic high. The neighboring state of Victoria, with lower vaccination rates, reported 2,179 new locally acquired cases, down from 2,297 the day before.

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Despite the lockdown, Canberra, the nation’s capital, reopened cafes, pubs and gyms with strict social distancing rules on Friday. Overall Coronavirus cases in Australia are still relatively low, with some 139,000 cases and 1,506 deaths. According to the Australian Medical Association, which represents doctors in the country, the country’s health system will not be able to handle a sudden influx of coronavirus patients once the country reopens.




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