Minister hints at when international travel will return after vaccine breakthrough

Tom Flanagan
·News Reporter
·2-min read

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt has hinted at when Australians are likely to see their next international holiday.

Mr Hunt was at the University of Queensland on Friday to announce that its coronavirus vaccine is on course to be rolled out as early as July next year, as the government aims to administer a vaccine to all those who wish to get it by the end of 2021.

He said if the vaccination strategy went as planned, Australians would be “very close to” widespread international travel by the end of next year.

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt says the University of Queensland's vaccine is on course for a third quarter roll out next year. Source: Nine
Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt says the University of Queensland's vaccine is on course for a third quarter roll out next year. Source: Nine

Mr Hunt said that all of Australia’s contracted vaccinations were proving to be successful so far.

“[That] is beyond our wildest dreams,” he told reporters.

He said if there was a surplus of vaccines, the remainder would be used for “supporting our neighbours”.

The government has signed a deal to secure 51 million doses of the University of Queensland vaccine and will be produced in Melbourne's CSL plant if approved.

Early trial results show the drug is proving to produce a positive antibody response and will commence phase three trials soon. Mr Hunt said the vaccine was ahead of schedule.

As Victoria and NSW once again recorded days of zero cases on Friday, Mr Hunt praised the nation’s response to the virus.

“What we have achieved is incredible,” he said.

However noting a new daily record in terms of global deaths, he warned of the vaccine’s importance.

“We can't be fully safe until the world is safe and that is where vaccines are so important.”

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