“It’s simply not good enough for the Prime Minister to treat the media like five year olds and tell them there are ‘layers of complexity’ ‘which I won’t bore you with now’ behind why she can’t say more about a trans-Tasman bubble before April 6,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“We’ve been waiting months for some detail on why we don’t have quarantine free travel with Australia, so please Prime Minister, bore away – I think you’ll find we’re all ears.
“New Zealanders want to know what the process will be and what the details are that are holding it up.
“Why is it so hard for this Government to produce and explain its plan in a timely fashion?
“As I outlined earlier today, from airport and airline readiness to existing protocols already being used by Australian states and here by contact tracers, there doesn’t appear to be any good reason why we don’t have quarantine free travel today.
“If there is Prime Minister, please reveal it and tell us how you’re going to fix it.
“Claiming that everything has changed because state-by-state agreements are now possible is utterly disingenuous.
“Potential for state-by-state agreements with New Zealand have been mooted since last June. If the Government wanted them it could have been done.
“It’s clear we’ve been misled that serious talks on a bubble have been ongoing with Australian officials. They might have been occurring, but they clearly haven’t been serious.
“It has suited Jacinda Ardern to keep New Zealand hermetically sealed from Australia, leaving hundreds of businesses and thousands of jobs across our tourism, hospitality and other sectors in her wake.
“At this rate there’s every chance Australia will have a functioning travel corridor with Singapore before New Zealand, and Australians will be sunning themselves on Sentosa Island rather than skiing in Queenstown.”