Business will be encouraged that Government is working on safe solutions to enable quarantine-free travel for all vaccinated travellers based on a new risk assessed entry criteria. It is also positive that they are developing a digital travel health declaration, rapid testing regimes, trialling options for shorter and home-based isolation, and accelerating the vaccine rollout nationally, says Auckland Business Chamber CEO, Michael Barnett.

“Employers will be looking now for greater responsiveness to facilitating entry for business travellers needing MIQ and vaccinated workers with desperately needed essential skills,” he said. “Business also must be told the operating conditions, movement restrictions and financial support that will apply if and when there are snap lockdowns so that not only people’s health but jobs, livelihoods and the economy do not lose the gains achieved to date through the elimination strategy.”

While employers would continue to act responsibly with supportive health and wellbeing workplace environments that encourage staff to get vaccinated, they also needed confidence that Government will initiate stringent policies and procedures at airports and sea ports.

“We are playing the game of our lives and the mantra has to be that ‘no one’s safe till we’re all safe’,” Mr Barnett said.

“We all recognise the roadmap for the next six months will be iterative, but we can do more to boosting protection including mandatory QR code scanning, Bluetooth enablement and mask wearing at public events – and pre-entry testing. Use the tools, the science and evidence to keep on moving the dial forward to a full and manageable opening of our borders, economy and lives.”

For more information, please contact Michael Barnett on 027 563 1150
Michael Barnett, Chief Executive, Auckland Business Chamber