Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that New Zealand is to lift all coronavirus restrictions, with the exception of border control, after the country’s health officials declared there were no known and active cases of the virus in the country. The Prime Minister added that she “did a little dance” when she heard the news.
Ardern’s strict and cautious approach to the virus has drawn global support, with a strict four-week lockdown after only 200 confirmed cases to ensure minimal spread. As a result, the total number of those diagnosed with the coronavirus remained under 1,500. Modelling by scientists suggests that were it not for these stringent measures, the deaths could’ve been in the hundreds rather than the twenty-two that occurred.
According to data from Google, the citizens of New Zealand had stayed at home more than their counterparts in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Prime Minister Adern has regularly referred to her people as a “team of five million” as a way to emphasize unity against the coronavirus.
Adern explained that she had no timeline for lifting border control, and for the near future only New Zealanders and their immediate family could enter the country, and even then would be subject to a strict 14-day government-quarantine.
In addition to New Zealand, Montenegro, Fiji and the Faroe Islands have defeated the coronavirus. Moreover, Taiwan, Iceland, Cambodia and Trinidad and Tobago have declared they have less than ten active cases of the virus.