NT will be first in Australia to lift major coronavirus restrictions and here's what will be open

The Northern Territory's roadmap to fully lifting coronavirus restrictions is the first announced so far by any state and territory government in Australia.

Pubs will soon be able to reopen in the Northern Territory.

Pubs will soon be able to reopen in the Northern Territory. Source: AAP

The Northern Territory will be the first government to lift major coronavirus restrictions, creating a national test case for life returning to normal.

NT chief minister Michael Gunner has announced pubs and restaurants will reopen on 15 May, while public swimming pools, fishing with friends and golf will restart on Friday.

The restrictions on nightclubs and team sports are scheduled to be lifted on 5 June.

Advertisement
Northern Territory chief minister Michael Gunner announced the plans to lift restrictions on Thursday.
Northern Territory chief minister Michael Gunner announced the plans to lift restrictions on Thursday. Source: AAP


Businesses that reopen need to have management plans in place.

“Today we take our first steps to a recovery," Mr Gunner told reporters on Thursday.

The eased rules could provide a blueprint for other jurisdictions due to make critical decisions about restarting economic and social activity in the coming weeks.

The last new case of coronavirus in the NT was recorded on 19 April.

The NT's low number of coronavirus cases has prompted the lifting of restrictions, however, border closures are set to remain in place indefinitely.

Australia's death toll sits at 91 after an 86-year-old died in Tasmania's northwest.

More than 5,600 of the 6,746 people diagnosed with coronavirus nationally have recovered.



Prime Minister Scott Morrison has flagged a national cabinet meeting with state and territory leaders in mid-May as crucial to lifting some social and economic clamps.

Deputy chief medical officer Paul Kelly is confident the health system is equipped to deal with fresh outbreaks after Australia suppressed the virus.

"If a second wave does occur, we'll deal with it quickly and we'll respond to it," he said.



Infection rates have grown overseas after strict lockdown measures were lifted, with Germany the latest example after easing rules last week.

But Mr Morrison is adamant Australia can lift restrictions in a safe way.

"Of course, there will be outbreaks. That is what living with the virus will be like," he said.

"That is why the protections that we put in place for a COVID-safe Australia are so important."

Testing, contract tracing and quick, effective responses to outbreaks are considered key benchmarks in edging back towards normal life.

People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others and gatherings are limited to two people unless you are with your family or household.

If you believe you may have contracted the virus, call your doctor (don’t visit) or contact the national Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080. If you are struggling to breathe or experiencing a medical emergency, call 000.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at .


SHARE
3 min read
Published 30 April 2020 at 1:52pm
Source: SBS