Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morison, has announced this morning that Passenger flights into Cairns from Papua New Guinea will be restricted following the increased number of positive cases reported in PNG.
“At midnight tonight, we will further reduce the risk of COVID-19 from PNG to Australia by suspending passenger flights from Papua New Guinea into Cairns,” said Morrison.
“We will do that for a fortnight and further assess the situation over the next fortnight,” he added.
Freight however will continue, to ensure necessary cargoes are transported from Cairns into PNG and back.
Morrison also announcing support of 1 Million AstraZeneca Vaccine and at the earliest the supply of 8,000 AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines from Australia’s stock.
The 8000 earmarked for vaccination of the country’s essential health workforce, with an initial rollout for the National Capital District and Personal Protective Equipment.
Meanwhile, Air Niugini has announced that from 18th – 27th March, flights from PNG to Cairns have been canceled, and the number of passengers the airline is permitted to carry into Brisbane has been cut by 30%.
Air Niugini will continue to operate five services a week to Brisbane, however as a result of the new restrictions there are no seats available on any Air Niugini flight to Brisbane until at least 27th March, and only limited seats thereafter.
Passengers already holding tickets will not be able to travel, and will be contacted and assisted to re-book their flights for later dates.
The movement of freight between Brisbane and PNG (and vice versa) will not be affected by the new restrictions.
Air Niugini regrets the inconvenience caused and asked for customers’ patience while it manages its way through the latest restrictions imposed.