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Why Australia should set a date to reopen the borders – and why it will be detrimental if we don’t 

Why Australia ‘needs to set a date to open the international borders’ – and why it could be detrimental if we don’t

  • NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet says Australia needs a date to reopen borders
  • Foreign university students will be allowed to stay in purpose-built housing 
  • Government scheme expected to be paid for by the universities themselves
  • Comes despite Budget revelation Australia’s border to stay closed until 2022 

Australia must set a firm date for reopening its international borders even if it has to be changed later in case the country gets ‘left behind’ by the rest of the world, Dominic Perrottet has said.

The New South Wales treasurer was adamant we need better ‘direction’ and ‘a roadmap’ on resuming international travels, especially incoming flights, to boost economic certainty.

His comments come after federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg announced in the Budget that the international border will remain closed until mid-2022 and international students would not arrive until the end of 2021. 

With Australia’s borders set to remain shut until mid-2022, the federal government has announced changes to a number of visa categories in this year’s Budget (pictured, Sydneysiders at March 4)

One estimate claims international students studying at Australia's top eight universities is worth $18billion to the Australian economy (pictured, students at Melbourne University)

One estimate claims international students studying at Australia’s top eight universities is worth $18billion to the Australian economy (pictured, students at Melbourne University)

Mr Perrottet warned that any sense that our borders were ‘closed indefinitely’ could see Australia ‘meander along’ and ultimately be bad for business. 

‘We do need direction and a roadmap on the opening of international borders, we can’t sit here on the other side of the world and be left behind,’ he told 2GB.

Mr Perrottet’s big concern was the impact of the message that Australia’s borders remain closed on the the international student business in NSW – which he says is the state’s second largest ‘export’, employing ‘tens of thousands’ of people. 

His comments come after it was announced foreign university students will be given special permission to fly into Australia without going into hotel quarantine.

The NSW government is planning for international students to be allowed to enter and isolate in purpose-built accommodation in Sydney.

The scheme is expected to start in August, with universities helping students cover the cost of their 14-day quarantine.

Mr Perrottet believes leaving the borders closed indefinitely could see other nations advantage of students inability to come into Australia to study.  

‘What we don’t to see are the UK and US really get into that market.’

NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet was adamant we need better 'direction' and 'a roadmap' on resuming international travels, especially incoming flights

NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet was adamant we need better ‘direction’ and ‘a roadmap’ on resuming international travels, especially incoming flights

Students pictured outside the University of New South Wales in Sydney. NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet has said the state does not need the federal government's approval to move forward with the plan

Students pictured outside the University of New South Wales in Sydney. NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet has said the state does not need the federal government’s approval to move forward with the plan

Over 610,000 international students enrolled at Australian institutions in 2020 – thought many were unable to commence because of the pandemic.

Commencements were 126,812.

Figures from 2018 show NSW had by far the biggest proportion of international students of any Australian state – around 334,000 or 38 per cent.

London Economics calculated that foreign students studying at our top eight universities contributed $18billion to the Australian economy.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk