The Housing Industry Association has welcomed news that Queensland will open its borders on October 1 to 41 NSW postcodes, saying “thousands of builders and tradies working either side of the NSW/QLD border will breathe a sigh of relief”.
The decision will assist workers unduly impacted by the ‘border bubble’ near the Gold Coast to get back to work and deliver the new homes and renovations critical to both state’s economies.
“The housing industry was given no time to prepare properly for what was a major logistical blow to normal business movements,” Executive Director HIA – Gold Coast/Northern Rivers, Toni Bull said.
“There was a clear underestimation of how mobile the home building industry is and how many businesses would be impacted.
“The Queensland Government’s announcement that they will open the borders to the areas of NSW bordering on Queensland is welcomed by HIA, as the burden the closures were having on our members and their customers was becoming unbearable,” Ms Bull said.
“The complicated and inconsistent rules that previously governed who could work over the NSW/QLD border was untenable and needed to be sorted or done away with.
“There was also difficulty in moving building materials and supplies, on top of the movement of labour, forcing some projects to come to a halt meaning staff were facing the threat of being laid off. Thankfully mass layoffs may be averted due to this announcement.
“With the Gold Coast region in particular feeling the pain of losing jobs in tourism, ensuring home building can continue in a sensible and managed way will help to ensure critical jobs and economic activity for the region is maintained.
“HIA is glad the Queensland government has recognised the importance of the sector and has chosen to open the borders,” Ms Bull concluded.