Asia - Pacific

Australia removes travel restrictions for vaccinated citizens from Nov. 1

Health minister says unvaccinated people still need permission before international travel

Islamuddin Sajid   | 27.10.2021
Australia removes travel restrictions for vaccinated citizens from Nov. 1

ANKARA

Australia on Wednesday announced removing travel restrictions and opening its international borders for vaccinated people from Monday, local media said.

The country's Health Minister Greg Hunt said they scrapped the permission requirement for international travel for vaccinated Australians from Nov. 1.

“Australian citizens and permanent residents who want to travel overseas will need to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated with the second dose occurring at least seven days prior to travel,” ABC News quoted Hunt as saying.

“These changes will also facilitate travel by children under 12 years of age,” he added.

However, un-vaccinated people will still need permission from the government prior to their international travel.

The health minister said the government is planning to allow international students and critical workers to come back to Australia in the second stage, according to the report.

Earlier this month, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced reopening the international border from November for the fully vaccinated citizens.

Australia has been one of the countries in the world since March last year with the tightest border controls, even prohibiting its own citizens from leaving the country.


Pfizer as booster dose

Meanwhile, Australia's Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has approved the Pfizer vaccine for use as a booster (third dose) for Australians aged 18 years and older.

“Subject to final ATAGI (Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunization) advice, it is expected that a general population booster program will commence no later than 8 November with original priority groups, including people in aged care and disability care settings, to be offered the option to receive a booster as a priority,” Health Minister Greg Hunt tweeted.

“With over 85 million Pfizer vaccines already secured for supply into the future, Australia is well prepared to provide booster doses as approvals are provided by the medical experts,” he added.

According to TGA, the individuals aged 18 years and older may receive a booster (third dose), at least six months after the completion of a COVID-19 vaccine primary series.

So far, Australia has fully vaccinated its over 74% population.

* Writing by Islamuddin Sajid

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