Australia to reopen economy in stages by July

Australia plans to reopen the economy in three stages by July, but there are no plans to open the country to general international travelers in the foreseeable future.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Friday the states will set their own pace in easing coronavirus restrictions and details of the second and third stages of the plan had yet to be finalized.

Australia’s two most populous states, New South Wales and Victoria, are continuing to record new cases daily while the other states and territories have gone multiple days without finding new infections despite ramped up testing.

Queensland will relax its social distancing rules for Mother’s Day on Sunday by allowing up to five people from one household to visit another household.

Northern Territory will open pubs next week for the service of alcohol with meals.

Under the first stage of a national plan agreed by federal and state leaders on Friday, small cafes and restaurants will open as long as each patron has at least 4 square meters (43 square feet) of space.

Children will return to classrooms and groups of 10 people will be allowed to gather outdoors.

Playgrounds, golf courses, swimming pools and libraries will reopen.

Nightclubs and other drinking venues without seated dining will not reopen until stage three.

Morrison said general international travel would not open up “in the foreseeable future.”


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