Queensland border reopens to regional NSW

Queensland border: NSW residents outside Sydney can travel north from November 3

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Sydney residents will have to wait a bit longer.

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Queensland is opening its border to regional NSW from Tuesday.

The change, made on the eve of Queensland's impending state election, means that NSW's regional and rural residents will be able to enjoy the warmer weather north of the border from November 3.

Sydney residents are still restricted from entering the northern state.

Queensland's chief health officer Dr Jeanette Young said continuing cases without identifiable sources in southwestern Sydney meant that there were carriers in the community NSW health authorities were yet to find.

She said that visitors from outside Sydney could still depart to Queensland via the state capital's airport, but would need to travel to the aviation hub without stopping in the greater metropolitan area.

Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young said ongoing mystery COVID-19 outbreaks in the Sydney area was behind her decision to advise that residents from the city should continue to be blocked from entering Queensland.

"Yesterday they had four new cases and one of those cases they could not link to any other known clusters," she said.

"(That) means that they have transmission and they don't know where it is coming from."

The border between the two states closed in August, with Queensland previously saying it would reopen it on November 1 if NSW had control of virus outbreaks in the community.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has repeatedly said she won't put Queenslanders' lives at risk by reopening it too early.

"I have to do what I have to do to keep Queenslanders safe," she said on Thursday while campaigning for re-election on the Gold Coast.

The border has become a state election issue, with Labor warning voters the Liberal National Party can't be trusted to make sound decisions to protect the community from the virus.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian have also waded into the debate, with both repeatedly urging Queensland to open the border sooner than later.

It's a call echoed by business groups, who say the closed border is stifling trade and crippling profits.

The border with NSW closed on August 8, with access only permitted to frontier residents, essential workers, freight drivers and people granted medical or compassionate exemptions.

A border bubble taking in much of northern NSW remains in place, with residents from communities as far south as Byron Bay allowed to travel in and out of Queensland.

- with AAP

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