Australia will begin welcoming the return of tourists, business travellers and other visitors who are fully vaccinated visa holders as of Feb. 21, 2022.
In a joint statement, the Hon. Scott Morrison MP, the Hon. Greg Hunt MP and the Hon. Dan Tehan MP indicated that “these changes will ensure we protect the health of Australians, while we continue to secure our economic recovery.”
They pointed out that Australia’s health system has demonstrated its resilience throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, including though the recent Omicron wave. With improving health conditions, including a recent 23% decline in hospitalizations due to COVID, the National Security Committee of Cabinet today agreed Australia is ready to further progress the staged reopening of our international border.
Visa holders who are not fully vaccinated will still require a valid travel exemption to enter Australia, and will be subject to state and territory quarantine requirements.
They also noted that the Feb. 7, 2022 announcement “will give certainty to our vital tourism industry, and allow them to start planning, hiring and preparing for our reopening. In 2018-19, tourism generated more than $60 billion for the Australian economy, with more than 660,000 jobs dependent on the industry.
Since the Morrison Government commenced Australia’s staged international border reopening on 1 November 2021 we have seen almost 580,000 arrivals come to Australia including to reunite with loved ones, work or study.”
Earlier this month, New Zealand announced that it will be reopening its borders using a five-step plan that will see it fully open by October of 2022.