Boarders

Australia state reopens border after Covid cases plummet

Victoria, which imposed a tough lockdown after a surge in cases, has reported no new infections since the beginning of November.

The state is also relaxing its rules on wearing face masks.

Australia has recorded about 900 deaths and 28,000 infections in total.

The country has relied on lockdowns, widespread testing and aggressive contact tracing to push daily infections nationwide close to zero.

Australia shut down its international borders early in the pandemic and requires all arriving travellers to spend two weeks in quarantine in designated hotels.

Australia borders to stay shut as Covid-19 daily deaths reach record

There was, however, some evidence that drastic lockdown measures in the city of Melbourne were having an effect, with daily new infections in the state of Victoria slowing to a near two week low.

"I am more hopeful of that today than I was in the course of the past week," Morrison told reporters in Canberra, as he called on state leaders to cooperate to allow stranded residents to return home.

Australia's federal political system has led to its eight states and territories taking different measures in response to the crisis, resulting in several internal border closures.