New Zealand intends to open the borders for international comers early next years, said the government today.
Although the country defeated COVID-19 crisis completely, they are cautious when it comes to opening the borders.
Their new plan entails speeding up the vaccination process of the first dose to cover all the population. They plan to delay the second doze to vaccine more people against the delta variant.
“From a population basis, it makes sense to get as many New Zealanders at least partially vaccinated quickly,” said Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand’s Prime Minister.
New Zealand is among the countries that succeeded in wiping out COVID-19. Since the dawn of crisis, the south pacific nation, which has 5 million residents, reported only 26 deaths.
As a result, life in the country has become almost to normal.
Closing the borders in front of foreigners, New Zealand managed to get back to normal life.
However, will it be easy to maintain a safe COVID-19-free environment once they open the borders?
Ardern announced their commitment to experts’ measures to battle the crisis.
“While the pandemic continues to rage overseas, and the virus continues to change and mutate, the best thing we can do is lock in the gains achieved to date while keeping our options open,” said Ardern.
The Prime Minister made it clear that no opening borders will take place soon. They may open the borders once they finish vaccinating all the population.
The vaccination process is moving in a slow manner, yet they are relatively speeding up the process.
On the first quarter of 2022, the country intends to carefully open the borders in front of travelers, said Ardern.
Travelers, who received the two shots of vaccines and come from green countries, will not go into quarantine. However, those who come from low-risk countries and did not receive vaccines, will need to stay 14 days in quarantine.
Concerning those who got the vaccination yet come from medium-risk countries, they will stay from 5 to 8 days in quarantine.
Nonetheless, the country has not clarified the country-risk ranking yet, as the situation may change rapidly.
According to Ardern, as a test, the country will only allow business travelers to isolate in their homes in October.