Zero fully vaccinated Aus travellers test positive in MIQ

Chris Hipkins admission in Parliament this afternoon that zero fully vaccinated travellers from Australia have tested positive in MIQ since August 23 should prompt him to immediately open the Trans-Tasman Bubble, says National’s COVID-19 Spokesperson Chris Bishop.

“Chris Hipkins’ answer to me indicated that 2544 travellers from Australia have been through MIQ since August 23. Just three unvaccinated travellers tested positive in MIQ and not a single fully vaccinated traveller has tested positive.”

“The risk of allowing fully vaccinated travellers with negative pre-departure tests for Covid to travel to New Zealand is basically zero. It just beggars belief that from December 15 Aucklanders will be able to travel around New Zealand while fully vaccinated people in Australia can’t travel to New Zealand.

“The Government says it will take a “progressive” and “phased approach” to border re-openings. A good place to start would be to immediately open the Trans-Tasman Bubble again. This would allow thousands of Kiwis to return home for Christmas.

“The Government needs to stop offensively referring to Kiwis abroad as “cumulative risks” and “striking matches in a forest”.  As today’s answer demonstrates, the risk of allowing fully vaccinated travellers to skip MIQ is extremely low.

“MIQ is a lottery of human misery and has seen one million Kiwis overseas shut out from their own country

“Families around New Zealand will have empty seats at Christmas dinner this year unless the government acts now.

“Australia is opening up. NSW, Victoria and the ACT have already opened quarantine-free travel to Kiwis with others on the way. We need to return the favour.

“The time for Fortress New Zealand is over. Let’s open up and reunite families for Christmas.”