Insight Online News
Canberra, Nov 22 : In a big relief to international travellers, including students and workers, Australia on Monday announced that from December 1 fully vaccinated eligible visa holders can come to the country without needing to apply for a travel exemption.
“Eligible visa holders include skilled and student cohorts, as well as humanitarian, working holiday maker and provisional family visa holders.”
Under these arrangements, travellers must be fully vaccinated with a completed dosage of a vaccine approved or recognised by Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA).
Both of India’s vaccines, Covishield manufactured by the Serum Institute of India and the indigenously produced Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin, are approved by the TGA.
Besides having a valid visa, the travellers must provide proof of their vaccination status. They must also present a negative Covid-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test taken within three days of departure.
Travellers arriving in Australia must comply with the quarantine requirements in the state or territory of their arrival, and any other state or territory to which they plan to travel.
“The return of skilled workers and international students to Australia will further cement our economic recovery, providing the valuable workers our economy needs and supporting our important education sector,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.
From December 1, Australia will also welcome back fully vaccinated citizens from Japan and the Republic of Korea. Under these arrangements, citizens of Japan and the Republic of Korea who hold a valid Australian visa will be able to travel from their home country quarantine-free to participating states and territories, without needing to seek a travel exemption.
“Today’s announcement follows earlier changes which have seen us welcome home fully vaccinated Australians, permanent residents and their immediate family members since 1 November, and follows the commencement of the Singapore safe travel zone yesterday.
“These changes demonstrate the success of our National Plan, as the Government continues to get Australia back to normal and reopen to the world safely,” he said.
It is estimated that more than 233,000 visa holders would be allowed to come to Australia under the scheme.
Australia had shut its international border in May 2020 and allowed only restricted numbers of citizens and permanent residents to enter in a bid to curtail the spread of Covid-19.
Since Australia resumed international travel on November 1, only citizens, permanent residents and their families were able to travel without quarantine.
More than 85 per cent of the eligible population in Australia over 16 are fully vaccinated while 91.5 per cent have had one dose.