The Government needs to put forward a timeline for the opening of the trans-Tasman bubble immediately to allow businesses to plan for the future, Leader of the Opposition Todd Muller says.
"While there may have been discussions on both sides of the Tasman, there is no visibility on the Government's timelines or proposed working arrangement which might see reciprocal travel between our two countries start any time soon. This is bad news for New Zealand's tourism operators and our hospitality sector.
"If a timeline was put forward these businesses would be able to plan for the future, instead the lack of information only puts their viability in further doubt. We don't want to see any more businesses close due to a lack of certainty brought about by the Government.
"The Foreign Affairs Minister made the point this week that speculation is unhelpful in a vacuum of information, but he needs to recognise it is his bold talk with little action that is creating that vacuum.
"Our tourism operators need confidence to keep their doors open and keep people in jobs. National's Tourism Accelerator grant programme will do this by funding projects that will help stimulate demand and increase productivity.
"We have also announced our JobStart policy that will provide $10,000 to small businesses for each hire they make. National's coming up with the policy ideas, the Government needs to immediately put forward a timeline for travel between Australia and New Zealand.
"Opening up a trans-Tasman bubble will be a lifeline to our tourism and hospitality sector so they can better plan their future. The Government needs to lay out a timeline immediately and work hard to achieve it."