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Families reunite in time for Qld Christmas

Queenslanders will soon be able to reunite with family and friends across the border after Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the state’s path to reopening.

Ms Palaszczuk said the first easing of border restrictions will begin on November 19, when the state is expected to hit 70 per cent double dose vaccination, with a further relaxing of restrictions coming four weeks later.

From November 19, fully vaccinated people will be able to fly into Queensland if they have tested negative within the past 72 hours, but will have to quarantine at home for two weeks.

Beginning December 17, when Queensland is expected to hit the 80 per cent target, fully vaccinated travellers from interstate hotspots will also be able to drive across the border.

They will still need to have tested negative within the previous 72 hours, but will no longer be required to quarantine.

Ms Palaszczuk said the date is “locked in” and the full reopening will proceed even if the 80 per cent target isn’t hit.

International arrivals will also switch from hotel quarantine to two weeks in home quarantine, as long as the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee approves.

Once Queensland’s vaccination rate reaches 90 per cent, there will be no entry restrictions or quarantine requirements for any travellers.

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) says the plan will boost business confidence, but has asked for further clarity and direction.

Businesses need to know how mandatory vaccine rules for workplaces and business premises would be controlled, and if there would be changes to density limits and other compliance requirements.

“Businesses need to know what they’re up against,” CCIQ policy and advocacy manager Cherie Josephson said.

Deputy Premier Steven Miles alluded to different rules for unvaccinated people in the state, saying their circumstances will vary from the inoculated population.

Queensland again recorded no new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, but Ms Palaszczuk has acknowledged reopening will mean “the end of zero COVID” in her state.

Currently 72.5 per cent of eligible Queenslanders have had one dose of a vaccine, and 56.9 per cent are fully vaccinated.

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