New Zealand has temporarily suspended its travel bubble with the Australian state of Victoria while the source of the new affairs in Melbourne is being investigated over the past two days.
The travel ban started on Tuesday at 20:00 (18:00 AEST) and will apply for at least 72 hours.
“Although the case announced today is not unexpected, as a case was announced yesterday, New Zealand officials believe that the most cautious option is to interrupt the travel bubble with Victoria, as there are still several unknowns. with the outbreak, 19 Minister of Response Chris Hipkins said in a statement.
Hipkins said the government understands the disruption it will cause to passengers who want to travel during the ban. However, they consider it the right call given the situation.
The latest COVID-19 cases are all linked to Whittlesea City, with 11 new cases reported in the past 24 hours. Victorian health officials said they believed more cases could come.
Meanwhile, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison will travel to New Zealand on May 30 to meet with Prime Minister Jacinda Arden in Queenstown. They will be accompanied by their partners.
This will be the first overseas trip of the year for Morrison and the first trip to New Zealand in more than a year. The two leaders last met in Sydney at the end of February, around the time the first COVID-19 case was discovered in New Zealand.
Ardern said the visit would be a good opportunity to celebrate the resumption of two-way quarantine-free travel with their ‘trans-Tasman cousins’.
“I look forward to welcoming Prime Minister Morrison back to New Zealand after a difficult year for both our countries through the pandemic,” Ardern said. “Our relationship with Australia is our closest and most important, and it has never been so clear as in this difficult time for the world.”
‘Discussions will focus on how Australia and New Zealand will meet the shared challenges we face. The main focus of the meeting will of course be our recovery from COVID-19, as well as how we continue to work together on key regional and security issues. ”