NSW has recorded a fifth consecutive day with zero new local COVID-19 cases, with Victoria opening its borders to almost all of Sydney.
NSW's four-day streak without a locally-acquired COVID-19 case has convinced Victorian authorities to reopen the border to almost all of Sydney.
Barring the Cumberland local government area, all Greater Sydney LGAs - as well as Wollongong and Blue Mountains - will from 6pm on Friday be downgraded to "orange" on Victoria's health alert system.
People travelling to Victoria from an "orange" zone will need to apply for a permit, get tested within 72 hours of their arrival and isolate until they receive a negative result. However they will not be barred entry.
The Cumberland LGA takes in Berala, the centre of a 35-person virus cluster, and its residents will remain locked out of Victoria.
Some 25 of Greater Sydney's 35 LGAs had already been downgraded by Victorian authorities from "red" to "orange".
Elsewhere, regional NSW has been downgraded to "green" by Victoria, meaning residents and returning travellers are completely free to cross the border.
"It will be welcome news for many people who want to get home and have had a summer that has been somewhat disrupted, and in some cases more than that," Premier Dan Andrews told reporters on Friday.
NSW recorded zero new local cases in the 24 hours to 8pm on Thursday but five cases in travellers in hotel quarantine.
NSW recorded zero new locally acquired cases of #COVID19 in the 24 hrs to 8pm last night. There was 1 case recorded in a returned traveller. Two previous cases have been excluded after further investigations, bringing total number of cases since the start of the pandemic to 4,894 pic.twitter.com/10azDOpNHF
Despite the good news, NSW Health's Dr Jeremy McAnulty continued to implore the state's residents to get tested even with mild symptoms.
His plea comes after fragments of the virus were detected at a waste water plant in Warriewood, which takes in a catchment of more than 160,000 people on the northern beaches, as well as Berala and Glenfield.
Authorities suspect the fragments may be the result of recent local cases.
NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard on Friday said authorities would continue to take a cautious approach, and reiterated that gathering restrictions in Greater Sydney would not be eased before Australia Day.
"We've all been burnt ... this virus, we've all had our hopes dashed, our hearts broken when we've got to a point where we've thought, 'Oh, yep, this is doing really well'," Mr Hazzard told 2GB radio.
People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Check your jurisdiction's restrictions on gathering limits. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, stay home and arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.
News and information is available in 63 languages at sbs.com.au/coronavirus.