NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet has used one of his predecessor’s pandemic catchphrases in an appearance at Dubbo Airport as regional travel restarts across the state.
From this morning, people in regional NSW may travel into Greater Sydney and Sydneysiders are able to travel anywhere the state.
The easing of restrictions came as the first quarantine-free international flights landed at Sydney Airport.
Borrowing one of former premier Gladys Berejiklian’s favourite lines, Mr Perrottet said NSW would not “go backwards” as it reopened for tourism.
“Let’s not underestimate what today means for our state … it’s the start of a new journey,” he said.
“As we open up, we won’t go backwards, we will start to rejoin the world – and that’s going to be great for the state.”
Dubbo, in the central west, was hard-hit by a coronavirus outbreak in August, which spread into a number of neighbouring towns including Indigenous communities.
After taking the first flight from Sydney this morning, the Premier admitted it had been an unpopular decision to push the restart of regional travel – originally slated to occur at the 80 per cent stage of the road map – back a fortnight.
Mr Perrottet said the reopening of travel across the state was a step towards “living with the virus”.
“It’s really been the efforts that people have made across our state that have enabled us to be able to open up safely and today, we’ll see many people being able to travel to regional NSW and hopefully this is the pathway to the future,” he said.
“I think NSW is leading the nation out of the pandemic.”