Government admits border will close for at least two years

MBIE hiring communications staff for their Managed Isolation Unit on a two-year contract shows that the border will be substantially closed for at least another two years, the National Party’s Covid-19 Border Response Spokesperson, Gerry Brownlee says.

“The bleak outlook for a widespread vaccine for Covid-19 tends to confirm that’s the case.

“The Government needs to stop the ad-hock, patched up arrangements it currently employs for border control.

“There are at least eight entities, including private security involved in border management. There’s no doubt all the people involved are doing their best, including the Minister of Housing and the Air Commodore now charged with leading border management, but the Government’s warnings on the eve of Parliament’s dissolution further confirms the vulnerability the country has to border breeches by Covid carriers or infected staff.

“The Government needs to outline a comprehensive structure for the years of border management and managed isolation quarantine which New Zealand faces.

“Too much of our economic recovery is dependent on this and addressing a more formal structure should be approached with more urgency,” Mr Brownlee says.