Federal MPs on the Gold Coast have warned that the city will miss out on yet another holiday tourism boom if a decision on reopening the border isnt made within the next week.
Queensland families and struggling businesses, who have been decimated by the border closures, are being left in the lurch with the State Government yet to unveil a timeline.
The Premier is also still refusing to commit to the national plan of reopening once the country hits 80 per cent fully vaccinated, despite the State’s Health Minister hinting earlier this week that it may happen by Christmas.
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Federal MP for McPherson Karen Andrews said clarity is desperately needed to give both residents and businesses enough time to prepare for the holiday season.
“My call today is to make sure that every State Government across Australia is doing all that it can to facilitate reopening of those borders from a domestic point of view,” Ms Andrews told reporters on the Gold Coast on Wednesday.
“Here in Queensland we have been devastated by border closures… We want to see that we have our borders open, that we can get our visitors here to the Gold Coast.”
Ms Andrews continued by admitting the Sunshine State is at “time-critical point”.
“We know that the airlines need a decision in about seven days as to the timing of the reopening of the border so that they can put in place the planning that they need to get their aircraft and the flights resuming here into Queensland,” she said.
“If the Queensland Premier does not take some swift action to provide the certainty that is needed by Queenslanders and businesses, Queenlsanders will miss out.
“Flights will be redirected into Sydney and that will have a devastating impact on those Queenslanders who want to meet up with their family.
“It will have a devastating impact on businesses in Queensland, particualry right here on the border.”
Ms Andrews said the uncertainty surrounding the border reopening is killing Queensland businesses.
“We are very close to missing out on another peak holiday period because the borders are not open and there is no certainty from the Queensland Government,” she said.
“The Queensland Premier needs to make it very clear as to when the borders will be reopening so businesses and families can do the planning that they need to regain their lives.
“The Queensland reopening is going to be delayed by the Queensland Government”.