New Zealand will lift remaining border restrictions in early August

WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand will lift its remaining pandemic border restrictions in early August, opening up to visitors from non-visa-waiver countries like India and China and allowing international students and cruise lines to return.

The government also plans to offer visa extensions to about 20,000 migrants in New Zealand as companies scramble for workers amid record-low unemployment and high absenteeism from work due to rising COVID-19 infections.

The final phase of the reopening of New Zealand’s border is taking place about two months ahead of schedule, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Wednesday.

The country has gradually reopened to foreigners this year – first to Australians and then to visitors from 60 visa-free countries including the US and Singapore – after ending its costly zero-COVID-19 policy .

The border was closed to all but citizens and long-term residents in April 2020 as part of strict measures to contain the spread of COVID-19. New Zealand will lift remaining border restrictions in early August

Brian Lowry

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