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Australia Frydenberg urges states to show more consistency on borders

04:51  24 january  2021
04:51  24 january  2021 Source:   9news.com.au

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Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has urged states to follow Federal Government definitions of what constitutes a coronavirus hotspot.

Speaking in Melbourne, Mr Frydenberg said the economic outlook would be improved if state leaders applied more consistency to border restrictions.

"My position is clear: closed borders cost jobs. We have to take the medical advice but we have also seen the Commonwealth work very hard on a national definition of hot spot.

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Josh Frydenberg wearing a suit and tie: Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has called on states to follow the national definition of virus hotspots. © Nine Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has called on states to follow the national definition of virus hotspots.

"I would love to see that national definition of a hot spot adhered to by the states. I think it would bring a lot more certainty for business and I think that would mean more jobs and, as we know, the tourism industry in particular and the aviation sector have been hit really hard by those closed borders at the end of last year."

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Mr Frydenberg stressed that expert health advice should be paramount in pandemic border policies.

"So many families had their travel plans interrupted with very short notice. So, yes, we need to take the health advice. [It] must be our first and foremost priority. Always follow health advice. At the same time, need a level of consistency around the approach to borders and the national definition of hot spot is a good way to go."

Mr Frydenberg also said the Federal Government was yet to receive details of proposals by some states for converting remote former mining camps in quarantine centres for returned international travellers.

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"We have had lots of ideas that have been put forward but we have not seen concrete proposals, and as the Prime Minister said late last week, he has an open mind, but obviously we need to focus on the standards of our quarantine system and local communities need to be fully engaged and obviously supportive of such measures."

Mr Frydenberg also took a swipe at tech giant Google that threatened to withdraw services from Australia over the government's planned media industry code.

"Google and other digital giants should focus not on blocking users in Australia accessing domestic content, they should focus on paying for it."

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usr: 0
This is interesting!