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Waikato Chamber Backs Calls For Transtasman Test Flights

Waikato Chamber of Commerce is backing the calls to begin regular flights between Canberra and Wellington as the first step to popping the Transtasman bubble.

A joint proposal from the Chambers of Commerce in Australia and New Zealand that will be presented to both Governments this week proposes starting early, testing carefully, and progressively opening the Australia-New Zealand market to air travel with regular flights between the two nation’s capital cities.

That would prove systems and processes are in place for safe and effective movement of people between the two countries, while kickstarting trade, business, travel, tourism, events – and save jobs.

Waikato Chamber executive director Don Good echoed Auckland Business Chamber CEO Michael Barnett’s sentiments earlier today that this plan would hopefully give both consumers and governments confidence that we can get back to business.

“We need to help the survival, recovery and sustainability of our vital tourism, export, event and travel sector. We feed each other and we need each other’s dollars urgently to help with economic recovery. New Zealand needs Australians back here as our single most important visitors, supporting our tourism sector, our cafes and events decimated by the enforced shutdown.

“We see the test flights as symbolic between the two nations’ capital and sister cities but critical to demonstrating that there are processes and safeguards in place to keep Covid-19 at bay and allow the free movement of people.

“Following the successful implementation of flights between Canberra and Wellington over a number of weeks, and the thorough evaluation of the systems and processes in place, we believe that further destinations around the Australian and New Zealand network could open.

“We need to not just say we are open for business but be able to roll out the welcome mat.”

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