New Zealand has suspended the Trans-Tasman travel bubble with all of Australia for at least the next eight weeks.
The suspension will come into effect at 11.59pm New Zealand time on Friday night.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the risk to New Zealanders has increased as a result of outbreaks in Australia.
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“We’ve always said that our response would evolve as the virus evolved. This is not a decision we have taken lightly, but it is the right decision to keep New Zealanders safe,” Ms Ardern said.
“Now is the time for a suspension to ensure New Zealanders aren’t put at undue risk from COVID-19 and to ensure we retain our hard-won gains. Our team of five million has worked hard to put us in a strong position both health-wise and economically. We will not risk that.”
Ms Ardern has urged New Zealanders who aren’t planning to stay long term in Australia to get home as soon as possible.
Managed return flights for New Zealanders will be in place for the next seven days but travellers will need to provide a negative pre-departure COVID test.
Travellers returning from New South Wales Wales will be required to do 14 days in quarantine while travellers from Victoria will be required to isolate until they return a negative test after day three.
Ms Ardern says the suspension will allow Australia to get its COVID outbreak under control.
“We do want the bubble to resume. We remain committed to it, and when I spoke to PM Scott Morrison this morning I conveyed this view directly. But it must be safe,” Ms Ardern said.