Tasmania’s borders to open in December

Tasmania has reported a second day of increasing new COVID-19 infections.

Tasmania has reported a second day of increasing new COVID-19 infections. Photo: AAP

Tasmania will reopen its borders on December 15 – but only to those who are fully vaccinated against coronavirus, Premier Peter Gutwein has announced.

Mr Gutwein said he expected that by then everyone in the state over the age of 12 will have had the opportunity to be vaccinated.

“On the 15th of December we will reopen our border,” he said on Friday.

“We are not going to turn back from that date. If you’re not vaccinated, get it done and get it done as soon as you can.”

Interstate arrivals will need to provide a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of travel.

More than 70 per cent of Tasmanians aged over 16 are fully vaccinated and more than 85 per cent have received one dose.

“I’m confident we will have achieved a 90 per cent vaccination rate [by December 15], so long as people continue to turn up,” Mr Gutwein said.

The state is closed to NSW, Victoria and the ACT, while high-risk zones are declared in Queensland and South Australia.

  • Click here for current Tasmania border restrictions

The state has had just three cases this year on the back of a hard border approach but has dodged several COVID-19 bullets.

An infected NSW man, who recently sparked a three-day lockdown in the south after escaping hotel quarantine and spending 18 hours in the community, did not spread the virus.

Mr Gutwein confirmed on Friday that authorities thought there was no more risk from the quarantine breach. Mandatory mask-wearing that had remained after the lockdown would end “effective immediately”, he said.

The state government is enforcing mandatory vaccines for healthcare workers on October 31 and says it will sack anyone who doesn’t meet the deadline.

-with AAP

Topics: Tasmania
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