Western Australia Border Closure Condemns Companies: Industry


Industry experts say Western Australia (WA) companies lose millions of dollars as a direct result of the Government of Western Australia’s decision to block borders for interstate highway travelers. We warn you that you may suffer.

Movement between Western Australia and other states has been restricted since the beginning of the COVID-19-prone state pandemic, and all states are now blacklisted. This was scheduled to change from February 5, as vaccine deployments in the state’s population over the age of 12 approached 90%.

However, Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan revealed on January 20 that resumption will be postponed until further notice due to the inefficiency of double doses to the new coronavirus Omicron variant. ..

According to a survey conducted by the Western Australian Chamber of Commerce (CCIWA), nearly one-third of businesses report “negative effects” as a result of ongoing border restrictions. On average, companies reported total loss of approximately $ 2.5 million.

The tourism and international education sector was reported to have been hit hardest by the immediate loss of revenue and long-term damage to its reputation. However, the Government of Western Australia has since granted exemptions to returnees who have been vaccinated three times.

Other sectors include agriculture, manufacturing, construction, ICT and professional services, and nearly three of the four businesses report the impact of the difficulty of hiring new staff.

Epoch Times Photo
On June 29, 2021, you will see an empty seating area outside the store in the central business district of Perth, Australia. (Photo courtesy of Matt Jelonek / Getty Images)

The peak industry group, the Ai Group, has accused the decision of not being involved in the business before the Government of Western Australia pulled the pin.

“If Western Australia is closed indefinitely from other countries and the world, it will have serious and long-term implications for the state and the country,” said Innes Willox, Chief Executive Officer of the Ai Group. I am. Said..

“This decision was made without meaningful consultation with the industry, and most of the state economy is already suffering from staff shortages, substantial labor migration, serious supply chain stress, and WA. A place to do business. “

The prime minister and many state prime ministers have become more willing to live with the virus, especially given the relatively low hospitalization rates for Omicron variants. The border remains closed to non-citizens for now, but the Prime Minister told 4CA Cairns radio on January 28 that international tourists may be allowed to return by Easter. rice field.

“WA is now an island on the island. This announcement was made in the face of an agreement to reopen in the national cabinet, not giving the industry certainty when the state will reopen, and about the support companies receive. We do not provide guidance, “Willox said.

“The state is currently facing the prospect of being cut off from the rest of the country and the world for months. The industry is becoming increasingly difficult to serve the state and support critical infrastructure. The longer the WA stays closed, the longer it will be out of consideration for investment, job creation and skills development, “Willox added.

The Government of Western Australia did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

There is also growing concern that WA Hospital is under tremendous burden due to staff shortages and bed availability, even before hospitalization with the new coronavirus. This is highlighted by Kristian Stratton, WA Head of the Ai Group.

“The state took two years to prepare its health system to deal with the outbreak of COVID, which makes it appear unprepared to deal with the much milder Omicron variants. I have questions about this, “says Strattons.

However, this was rejected by WA’s Chief Health Officer Andrew Robertson.

“Our hospital system is ready … we are preparing our system to open on February 5th,” Robertson told a report on January 20th.

Daniel Kumerev

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Daniel Khmelev is a Perth-based Australian reporter working on energy, technology and politics. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, physics and computer science. Contact him at [email protected]