Trans-Tasman bubble will commence 'as soon as it's safe to do so'

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Scott Morrison have agreed to commence work on a trans-Tasman Covid-safe travel zone.

Easing of travel restrictions between the two countries will happen, "as soon as it is safe to do so".

No time frame has been set, but when "effective travel arrangements across the Tasman" are made, they'll look at opportunities to broaden that to the Pacific.​

"A trans-Tasman Covid-safe travel zone would be mutually beneficial, assisting our trade and economic recovery, helping kick-start the tourism and transport sectors, enhancing sporting contacts, and reuniting families and friends," the statement said​.

They highlighted that health, transport and other protocols would need to be developed to ensure public health is protected.

While the current strict quarantine measures are still operating in New Zealand, there have been a number of requests for exemption, such as to visit a dying relative.

An initial review of one request resulted in court intervention, prompting Director General of Health Ashley Bloomfield to review previous requests.

He says this will ensure, "the correct process, has been followed, independently and expeditiously".

Though the tough quarantine measures have played a major part in halting the spread of COVID-19.

That's led to New Zealand seeing zero cases for two consecutive days.

However, Ardern wants New Zealand to maintain a cautious approach.

"As we head towards the level three review next week, my message remains, don't do anything that snatches our potential victory.

"Stay home, stay to your bubble, maintain physical distancing and let's double down to maintain the good run of numbers," says Ardern.