Australia has fully reopened its international borders to travelers vaccinated against the coronavirus.
This comes nearly after two years of pandemic-related closings, as tourists returned and hundreds of people, reunited with family and friends.
More than 50 international flights will reach the country through the day, including 27 touching down in Sydney, as the tourism and hospitality sectors look to rebuild after getting hammered by Covid-19 restrictions.
“It is a very exciting day, one that I have been looking forward to for a long time, from the day that I first shut that border right at the start of the pandemic,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.
Australia switched its COVID prevention strategy from extreme suppression with relentless lockdowns to living with the virus after achieving high vaccination levels.
Over 94% of people over 16 are now fully vaccinated, according to officials. The country’s gradual reopening of borders started in November when skilled migrants and international students were allowed to fly into Australia.
“It is a very exciting day, one that I have been looking forward to for a long time, from the day that I first shut that border right at the start of the pandemic,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters in the island state of Tasmania, which relies heavily on tourism.
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