Figure shows our 'closed borders' are a joke

 

Australia has marketed itself as an impenetrable fortress that has kept COVID-19 out with tough border measures, now the true situation has been revealed.

New Border Force data obtained by the Herald Sun shows that 14,000 Australians have been allowed to leave the country more than once during the pandemic, with some departing and returning five times.

The figures also show 134,758 Australian citizens and permanent residents have received exemptions to jet overseas, including 37,456 for compassionate or humanitarian reasons.

It is understood that the fresh figures have taken the government by surprise and prompted an urgent review.

The Herald Sun reports Scott Morrison's national security committee will meet on Thursday to consider tightening the exemption process.

"I'm concerned about these figures, which is why I've directed the Australian Border Force to provide me with advice on how outbound travel exemptions can be tightened," Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews told the publication.

While, it's clear many are slipping through the system, the federal budget papers this week revealed Australia's international borders will remain largely slammed shut until mid-2022.

Hopes of a return to international travel this year have been dashed in a document that contains a grim warning that normal flights won't resume until mid-2022.

One year after the Prime Minister urged the nation to "get out from under the doona", the 2021 budget's key economic assumptions include a prediction we are likely to stay under the covers for at least another year.

Originally published as Figure shows our 'closed borders' are a joke



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