People from Nauru, Tuvalu and American Samoa will soon be able to enter New Zealand without going into quarantine or self-isolation, Minister for Pacific Peoples Aupito William Sio announced on Friday.
The move is part of the government’s staged border reopening to reconnect New Zealand to the rest of the world.
Nauru, Tuvalu and American Samoa’s quarantine-free travel into New Zealand will begin from February 27.
Sio said travellers from Nauru, Tuvalu and American Samoa won’t enter MIQ or self-isolate on arrival into New Zealand.
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“This is in recognition that these countries have no Covid-19 community cases,” Sio said.
“Initially travel will be open to people who have a right to reside in New Zealand and those covered by border exceptions. There will be no pre-departure test required, but non-New Zealand citizens must be vaccinated.”
New Zealand has a one-way QFT travel agreement in place with the Niue, Vanuatu, Tokelau and Samoa for the recognised seasonal workers scheme.
The Cook Islands remains the only country with which New Zealand has a two-way QFT bubble with.
“If travellers transit another quarantine-free travel country (like Samoa or Vanuatu) they will still enter New Zealand with no isolation or quarantine required,” Sio said.
“If travellers transit a non-quarantine-free travel country (like Australia or Fiji), they will be subject to the same entry and testing requirements as other travellers from that country.”
Sio said opening up to Pacific countries with low Covid-19 risks was part of the initial staged border reopening.
“Extending this to Nauru, Tuvalu and American Samoa is an important step in further reconnecting with our Pacific whānau, bringing significant social and economic benefits and reflecting the importance of links across our region.
“It demonstrates our commitment to the principle of whanaungatanga with the Pacific.”
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