Thursday, 4th June, 2020

Start early, test carefully, and progressively open the Australia-New Zealand market to air travel starting with regular flights between Canberra and Wellington as the first step to prove systems and processes are in place for safe and effective movement of people between the two countries.

That’s the joint proposal from the Chambers of Commerce in Australia and NZ to go to both Governments in the next day to get the gateway open to kickstart trade, business, travel, tourism, events - and save jobs. The Chambers will report back when both governments have considered the detailed plan.

“We need to help the survival, recovery and sustainability of our vital tourism, export, event and travel sector and instead of talking about bursting the bubble, we have a plan to give consumers and governments confidence that we can bet back to business,” Auckland Business Chamber CEO, Michael Barnett, said

“We feed each other and we need each other’s dollars urgently to help with economic recovery. New Zealand needs Aussies back here as our single most important visitors, all 1.5 million of them, supporting our tourism sector, our cafes and events decimated by the enforced shutdown.

“We see the test flights as symbolic between the two nations’ capital and sister cities but critical to demonstrating that there are processes and safeguards in place to keep Covid-19 at bay and allow the free movement of people.

“Following the successful implementation of flights between Canberra and Wellington over a number of weeks, and the thorough evaluation of the systems and processes in place, we believe that further destinations around the Australian and New Zealand network could open.

“We need to not just say we are open for business but be able to roll out the welcome mat.”


For more information contact Michael Barnett, mobile: 0275 631 150.
Michael Barnett, Chief Executive, Auckland Business Chamber.