Australian media was reporting on Friday that the facility that handles most of the quarantined visitors arriving in the country has advertised tenders from vendors for an additional 60 months to keep the program going.
The Howards Spring facility in Northern Territories, part of Australia I have not visited yet, handles most international arrivals to the country, roughly 2,000 a week. The territory’s government is preparing for the quarantine center to stay open through most of the 2020s.
News.com.au is reporting:
The Northern Territory’s Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics is advertising a five-year tender for bus operators to transport people from major ports of entry including Darwin and Alice Springs airports, to its quarantine facilities, the NT News is reporting.
Epidemiologists say they don’t anticipate Australia needing quarantine facilities for another five years but say it’s possible they could be used for at least another two years.
“Five years seems a bit long,” infectious diseases expert Professor Peter Collignon of Australian National University told news.com.au.
“We will probably need them for another two to three years but five years? I don’t know.”
New Zealand plans to begin gradual reopening:
It seems that traveling to Australia may be challenging through the end of the 2020s or early 2030s based on some of the signals coming out of the country.
The Prime Minister of New Zealand indicated last week that the country would begin gradually reopening from the first quarter of 2022.
My personal view is that when all the residents have had a chance of getting fully vaccinated, open the border for vaccinated visitors, perhaps with rapid testing at max.
You either get the vaccine and have a mild or asymptomatic infection and are very unlikely to die of it, or you don’t get the vaccine, and your likelihood of dying is an order of magnitude greater.