New Delhi, Nov 22: Australia on Monday announced easing of its stringent pandemic-related travel restrictions from next month, a decision that is expected to help thousands of Indian students return to that country.
From December 1, fully vaccinated eligible visa holders including students and skilled workers, can come to Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption, a statement by the Australian government said.
It said the visitor will have to be fully vaccinated with a “completed dosage” of a vaccine approved or recognised by Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and hold a valid visa for one of the eligible visa subclasses.
The travellers will also have to provide proof of their vaccination status and present a negative COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test taken within three days of departure for Australia.
The statement said travellers to Australia must comply with the quarantine requirements in the territory of their arrival.
According to the announcement, citizens of Japan and the Republic of Korea, who hold a valid Australian visa, will be able to travel from their home country quarantine-free to Australia without needing to seek a travel exemption.
“Australia continues to take further steps to safely reopen to the world, with additional changes to our international border arrangements coming into effect on 1 December,” the statement said.
It said consistent with the national plan to safely reopen Australia, the changes will ensure that it continues to protect the health of Australians, while reuniting families and securing its economic recovery by opening the border to skilled and student visa holders.
“From 1 December 2021, fully vaccinated eligible visa holders can come to Australia without needing to apply for a travel exemption. Eligible visa holders include skilled and student cohorts, as well as humanitarian, working holiday maker and provisional family visa holders,” it said.
“Travellers to Australia must comply with the quarantine requirements in the state or territory of their arrival, and any other state or territory to which they plan to travel,” it added.
The Australian government said the return of skilled workers and international students to Australia will further cement the country’s economic recovery and support the education sector.
“Today’s announcement follows earlier changes which have seen us welcome home fully vaccinated Australians, permanent residents and their immediate family members since 1 November, and follows the commencement of the Singapore safe travel zone yesterday,” it said.
“These changes demonstrate the success of our national plan, as the government continues to get Australia back to normal and reopen to the world safely,” it said.–(PTI)