Australia COVID LIVE updates: Nation nears 80 per cent double dose vaccination rate as international borders to reopen
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The Sydneysiders heading overseas as soon as border reopens
Onerous regulations, fear of COVID-19 and uncertainty about flights won’t stop Sydneysiders heading overseas from Monday as the international border reopens for vaccinated Australians after nearly 20 months.
Ava Madon will fly to Singapore on Monday to visit her long-term partner Tahir, who she has not seen since before the pandemic. She booked her flight as soon as Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced fully vaccinated Australians would be free to leave the country from November 1.
Ava Madon will fly to Singapore on Monday to reunite with her boyfriend.Credit:Louise Kennerley
The couple has tried multiple times to get Tahir an exemption to enter Australia as immediate family of a citizen, but he was rejected every time, despite proof they had lived together for 12 months and shared finances.
“I’m overwhelmed, excited, scared, speechless, every emotion under the sun,” Ms Madon said of her imminent trip. “When I get there I’m just going to bawl my eyes, it’s going to be crazy.”
But travellers face new requirements that could make overseas holidays more complex and stressful, as Qantas warns passengers to check-in four hours before international flights.
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Morrison backs plan for more vaccines amid calls to extend AstraZeneca manufacturing
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has pledged Australian support for a global bid to vaccinate 70 per cent of the world’s population amid signs he could extend domestic production of the AstraZeneca vaccine to boost exports to countries in need.
Mr Morrison is signing up to a plan from the world’s biggest economies to scale up vaccine production and protect more people as criticism mounts that wealthier nations are rolling out booster shots while millions of others are yet to receive first doses.
People gather in Denpasar this week to register for the AstraZeneca vaccine.Credit:Getty
The pledge comes with an Australian call for stronger powers for the World Health Organisation to investigate health disasters, including sending inspectors into countries without their prior approval.
“We all agree there’s no higher priority than vaccinating people all over the world with safe and effective vaccines,” Mr Morrison told the G20 summit in Rome on Saturday.
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This morning’s headlines at a glance
Good morning, thank for joining us for today’s COVID-19 live blog. It’s Megan Gorrey here to bring you updates throughout the morning.
Here’s everything you need to know:
- Starting with some non-coronavirus news, and Australian entertainment star Bert Newton has died, aged 83. Tributes are flowing for the veteran performer, whose long career spanned television, stage and radio. He died on Saturday evening in Melbourne, where he had been receiving palliative care at a private clinic.
Australian television icon Bert Newton.Credit:Getty Images
- Prime Minister Scott Morrison has pledged Australian support for a global bid to vaccinate 70 per cent of the world’s population amid signs he could extend domestic production of the AstraZeneca vaccine to boost.
- NSW residents are gearing up to start heading overseas from Monday as the international border reopens for vaccinated Australians after nearly 20 months. The state recorded 236 new, locally-acquired cases of coronavirus and three deaths on Saturday. There are 343 people in hospital with the virus.
Residents of regional Victoria are being urged to remain alert for COVID-19 symptoms after the travel ban between Melbourne and regional areas was lifted on Friday evening. The state is expected to pass the 80 per cent double vaccination milestone this weekend. Victoria recorded 11 coronavirus deaths and 1355 new cases yesterday, the lowest daily tally since October 2. One protester was arrested for damaging a police car after hundreds of people rallied against vaccine mandates and proposed pandemic laws to be introduced by the Victorian government this week.
- Victoria has farewelled its daily COVID-19 press conferences, which have punctuated residents’ mornings for 19 months of the pandemic.
- Western Australia is requiring travellers entering the state from NSW, Victoria and the ACT to be fully vaccinated from next Friday.
- And in other news, more than two-thirds of Australians support the creation of a powerful federal anti-corruption watchdog, with Coalition voters slightly more in favour than those who support other parties.
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