New Zealand to Ease Almost All COVID-19 Restrictions


The New Zealand prime minister announced on Wednesday relaxation in tough COVID-19 restrictions, saying vaccine passes and vaccine mandates will not be required for some of the workforce in early April.

Jacinda Ardern announced the changes citing high vaccination rates, and projections that the omicron outbreak would peak early next month.

From April 4, vaccine passes will no longer be required to enter shops and venues, and vaccine mandates will be dropped for workers in education, police and defense. But staff in health and disability, aged care, corrections and border workforces still need to be vaccinated to do their work.



The government has also decided to abolish all limits on outdoor gatherings. Sports, concerts, and other gatherings outside, without limit, will resume from Saturday. Indoor gathering limits, meanwhile, have been doubled from 100 to 200.

Ardern said mandates were “undoubtedly” one of the reasons New Zealand reached a 95% vaccination rate for the eligible population and thanked citizens for their "enormous sacrifices" over the past two years.

So far, the island nation has fully vaccinated 95.1% of its population aged 12 and above, while 72.8% has received booster doses.

During the past 24 hours, the country reported 20,087 new infections with 11 related deaths, bringing the total caseload to 538,839 and fatalities to 210, according to the Health Ministry.

Source: AA


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