The Deputy Premier said the return of international travel is “at the heart” of the state’s roadmap to freedom at 80 per cent double-dose vaccination coverage.
Sky News Australia host Peter Stefanovic on Thursday morning asked Mr Barilaro how confident he is international travel in and out of Sydney Airport can be achieved before December 25.
“I am confident, the work that we’ve done on the roadmap both at 70 per cent and the work we’re now doing in relation to the 80 per cent roadmap,” Mr Barilaro said.
New South Wales is “absolutely on target” to open international borders by Christmas, Deputy Premier John Barilaro says. Picture: Getty Images
“And at the heart of it, of course we are talking about international travel, opening international borders, a changed environment around quarantining.
“And the opportunity to lead the nation when it comes to not only returning Australians that belong to NSW but every other state and to do so in a way they can reunite at Christmas, so we are confident.”
Mr Barilaro said the state government does not have a crystal ball so it does not know “what is ahead of us”.
“But on the current environment, the trajectory of our vaccination targets, our targets in relation to cases, I think we’re absolutely on target for opening borders,” he said.
NSW won’t enter another statewide lockdown after opening at 70 per cent: Barilaro
The government is also finalising what the future of quarantine will look like for those who are fully vaccinated against coronavirus.
The isolation period could be as short as seven days and will likely be done from the comfort of a returning traveller’s home.
“There’s a range of options in front of us that we’re finalising,” he said.
“it (quarantine) definitely won’t be what it is today.”
Berejiklian reveals glimpses into 80 per cent roadmap
Australia’s international travel ban was extended for a further three months at the beginning of September.
The “human biosecurity emergency period”, which prohibits Australians from jetting abroad, was due to end on September 17 but will now continue until December 17.
The federal government said the extension is based on medical and epidemiological advice provided by the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee and the Commonwealth Chief Medical Officer.
“We’ve extended biosecurity protections to December 17 in line with medical advice,” Health Minister Greg Hunt said this month.
“That in particular covers the pre-flight testing and masks for overseas arrivals and the existing restrictions being extended for cruise vessels, outbound travel and retail outlets at international terminals.”
Australians have been banned from travelling overseas since March 18, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, unless they are in possession of a government-issued exemption.

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