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Australian Government considers reducing quarantine period for international students

The Australian Government is evaluating the possibility of relaxing quarantine measures for international students. They’re planning two pilot programs in South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory, for the return of foreigners who want to study at the universities of these two jurisdictions.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison is considering imposing shorter quarantine periods, possibly in half, for international students and people who want to enter the country on business visas.

Algunos estudiantes internacionales podrían recibir permiso para regresar a Australia bajo “una prueba” tan pronto los estados lleguen a un acuerdo y abran de nuevo sus fronteras.

The reopening of borders to international students is very important, since exports of educational services employ more than 250,000 people, generating AUD $40,000 million to the country's economy.

Health Minister Greg Hunt confirmed that the government wants to modify the current mandatory two-week quarantine in hotels and create a "travel bubble" with safe countries, such as New Zealand, whose travel would not require quarantine, although they would depend on medical recommendations.

For his part, the Australian Minister of Education, Dan Tehan, explained last Monday that the Government is in talks with the states of South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory to allow the entry of a few international students to the country.

"We are still planning this and everything has to go according to the medical recommendations of the expert panel," Tehan said, reaffirming that they are contemplating a two-week quarantine in Australia that will be financed by universities and states.

Birmingham announced that some international students may return to the country next month as part of a program, which has been "pre-approved". Last Friday the national cabinet agreed on a pilot program to allow international students to come to study at approved institutions beginning in July.

It should be noted that the Government has not yet planned to open its borders for tourism, so it intends to promote internal tourism, although until now only the states of New South Wales and Victoria, as well as the Territory, have lifted travel restrictions from the Australian Capital.

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Source: SBS (2020). Australia Recovered from: https://www.sbs.com.au/