“The year of the COVID pandemic and the COVID recession has tested us like we’ve never been tested in many generations.”

Mr Morrison said WA had different circumstances to the rest of the nation, which is why the state had decided it would not join the aspiration to move to a nationally consistent approach to borders by December.

“They will continue to work with us. They have got their path set and we accept that,” he said.

“The door always remains open. They are always able to join us at a subsequent time.

“In the absence of a vaccine we may have to live this way for years.”

The Prime Minister said national cabinet had changed the way it made decisions to accommodate WA’s disagreement with the national border policy.

It meant a consensus between every state and territory would not be required before the national cabinet signed off on decisions.

“I’m not going to hold Australia back when one or two jurisdictions, at this point in time because of their own circumstances, don’t want to go along with the direction the rest of the country wants to go in,” Mr Morrison said.

He said only the Premier of Western Australia could answer when the state’s border would come down.

WA Premier Mark McGowan was due to address the media at midday.


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