The New Zealand Herald

Bubble decision today


Any decision on a full pause of the transtasma­n bubble is likely to be announced today as Covid-19 cases in Australia continue to climb.

Cabinet ministers met yesterday to discuss “travel arrangemen­ts with Australia, given the situation there”, a spokesman said.

The meeting was understood to be a full Cabinet meeting, which went ahead despite many ministers being on leave — including Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Deputy Prime Minister Grant Robertson.

Half of Australia’s population is in lockdown and New South Wales reported 124 cases yesterday — the biggest daily tally since the latest Delta outbreak began.

On Wednesday Covid Response Minister Chris Hipkins said about half of the arrivals from Australia were being checked for a negative predepartu­re test, and about 100 had been caught without one. He has previously said being caught and sent to MIQ for two weeks was a disincenti­ve for skipping a test.

Before yesterday’s meeting, the Government had intended to update the travel pauses for NSW, South Australia and Victoria next Tuesday.

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