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New Zealand to introduce compulsory COVID-19 testing for arriving international maritime crew

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Pacific | October 30, 2020 11:42:31 AM IST
Wellington [New Zealand], October 30 (ANI/Xinhua): The New Zealand government is moving to provide further protection against the chance of COVID-19 entering New Zealand through the maritime border.

After consulting with the maritime sector on tightening of the requirements for international maritime crew entering the country, Health Minister Chris Hipkins said on Friday that mandatory testing would be required for all replacement maritime crew arriving in New Zealand, regardless of the time they spend in transit.

This will begin from next week, with any maritime crew in managed isolation for more than 24 hours getting a COVID-19 test, Hipkins said in a statement.

"At the same time, we will also test maritime crew departing New Zealand, providing end to end protection in this area," he said.

"Our current border requirements have served us well, with recent cases quickly detected and contained, but there is no room for complacency. As our knowledge of COVID-19 grows, we are always looking for potential improvements," the minister said.

These changes balance the need to "keep COVID-19 out at the border," while at the same time protecting the supply chain in order to ensure the flow of import and export goods to and from New Zealand, Hipkins said. (ANI/Xinhua)

 
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