PM throws cold water on new NSW Premier's 'opening to the world' plan

PM throws cold water on new NSW Premier's 'opening to the world' plan

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has shrugged off NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet's plans to open the state to any traveller worldwide who has been vaccinated with a TGA-approved vaccine.

Perrottet's bold announcement this morning is in conflict with the Federal Government's previously announced roadmap, agreed to by National Cabinet, which in the first instance was only announced for Australian citizens or permanent residents and also included home quarantine provisions.

In a press conference the Prime Minister reiterated the Federal Government was "not opening it up to anything other than Australian citizens and residents and their immediate families".

"That is what will happen from the 1st of November in New South Wales, and indeed all around the country for Australians departing," he said.

"To return to Australia, obviously they'd have to do that through Sydney or under the capped arrangements in other states and territories."

He said this meant international travellers and international students would not yet be returning, although he claimed the NSW Premier had not been hasty in suggesting international travellers could enter the country from the start of next month.

"What the Premier did today was advise me and announce today that when international students, when international travellers, when skilled migrants are permitted to return to Australia by the Commonwealth Government, then they will not be required to quarantine when they come," the PM said.

"The Premier understands that that's a decision for the Commonwealth Government, not for the state governments. And when we believe that's the right decision to make, we'll make it at that time.

"I'm going to progress steadily, but at the same time, carefully, and I welcome this first step. I think it's a positive step."

Morrison also said the Federal Government would continue to support home quarantine trials in different states and territories.

"Remember, no state or territory is coming from the same place. They're all starting in different positions, with different rates of COVID in their states and territories," he said.

"And, indeed, I understand today in Tasmania they're going into a very short lockdown. They're still in phase A. And it's a reminder, wherever you are in Australia, please get vaccinated."

Updated at 6:06pm AEDT on 15 October 2021.

 

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