New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern confirmed the two-way trans-Tasman bubble will likely start in the first quarter of 2021.
It hasn’t disclosed an exact date but the NZ cabinet has agreed to it – providing there are no more outbreaks in Australia.
“It’s not a hypothetical. There have been several outbreaks. It is our intention to name a date … in the New Year once remaining details are locked down,” she said.
“We would need to make arrangements to have potentially thousands of New Zealanders brought back in numbers that we wouldn’t be able to facilitate, necessarily, in managed isolation.”
For the past two months Kiwis have been able to visit the Northern Territory and NSW without quarantining in Australia but they must do so on their return home.
Australia has been ready to start the bubble for several months but it has been continually delayed due to holdout states keeping their borders closed and several outbreaks including in Victoria.