In response to the two local cases, the NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced household gatherings will be restricted to 20 people and masks compulsory in indoor areas across Greater Sydney.
Meanwhile, Victorian authorities have requested flight manifests and will step up spot checks on flights from Sydney. They are also messaging people who entered Victoria after April 30.
No decision on whether to move Sydney from a green permit zone has been made.
The Victorian Department of Health on Wednesday evening declared it was treating all exposure sites in Sydney Tier 1.
The department tweets said that all locations in NSW would remain green zones under Victoria’s travel permit system until genomic sequencing results were in for the mystery case.
The list of exposure sites issued by NSW Health includes shops and restaurants in Sydney CBD, Paddington, Bondi Junction, Annandale, Casula, Mascot, Silverwater, Rushcutters Bay, Moore Park, Rose Bay, Brookvale, Collaroy, Balgowlah and Double Bay.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Thursday maintained that there are no significant issues with the country’s hotel quarantine system.
“Quarantine is one link in the chain, it’s not every link in the chain and Australians hotel quarantine has a 99.99 per cent success rate,” he said.
Mr Morrison made the comments in Melbourne when asked how likely it was that the federal government would take up a Victorian government’s proposal to build a 500-bed federal-funded quarantine facility on Melbourne’s fringe.
“We will look at this proposal, we’ll look at it carefully, but I do remind when it comes to the investment the Commonwealth Government has made in COVID, if you add up every single dollar every single state and territory has spent, both in economic support and health supports, double it, go a bit further and that’s what the Commonwealth is invested.”
Meanwhile, New Zealand authorities announced on Thursday afternoon that it would pause quarantine-free travel between the country and Sydney following the detection of two new cases.
New Zealand’s COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said flights from NSW would be suspended for 48 hours from 11.59pm on Thursday and authorities would continue to monitor the situation.
Queensland’s border with NSW will also remain open, but the state’s Health Minister warned residents on Thursday to reconsider travel plans.
It comes as two new cases of coronavirus were recorded in hotel quarantine in Victoria on Thursday, with the total number of active cases in the state’s system to 19. There are currently more than 1800 people undergoing hotel quarantine in Victoria.
More than 16,000 people were tested in Victoria on Wednesday, while 8163 vaccines were administered. In total 239,468 doses of vaccine have been administered in the state to date.
With David Estcourt