Annastacia Palaszczuk on Sunrise show.
Annastacia Palaszczuk on Sunrise show.

Premier in tense face-off with Armytage over border

PREMIER Annastacia Palaszczuk has defended the controversial Queensland border closure during a tense morning TV interview.

Ms Palaszczuk, interviewed by Sam Armytage on Channel 7's Sunrise show on Wednesday morning, was asked about the November 1 timeline for the border reopening.

"I did have to make some strong decisions about those borders and they were tough, they were tough on a lot of people," she said.

Sam Armytage interviews Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Sunrise.
Sam Armytage interviews Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Sunrise.

"But we've put in place a road map right until December to give everyone certainty.

"We hope NSW continues (with) no community transmission and if that happens our Health Officer at the end of the month takes into account the testing rates and sewerage testing.

"Unfortunately Victoria will remain closed because there is still community transmission."

Asked why she had chosen November 1 - the day after the Queensland election - Ms Palaszczuk said her decisions were "always made at the end of the month".

"We've always been consistent," she said.

"We've put out our road map now, everyone can see that in black and white."

Sunrise host Sam Armytage pressed further, asking Ms Palaszczuk about her plan for COVID-19 recovery and unemployment in Queensland.

"Queensland had the nation's worst unemployment numbers before coronavirus hit, the state was virtually broke before coronavirus," Ms Armytage said.

"Where are jobs going to come from now?"

Chanel 7 TV personality Sam Armytage. Picture: Adam Head
Chanel 7 TV personality Sam Armytage. Picture: Adam Head

National unemployment rose from 7.1 per cent to 7.4 per cent in June as the pandemic continued, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics data.

However Queensland was the only state to record an improvement in unemployment between May and June of 2020, dropping from 7.8 per cent to 7.7 per cent.

Underemployment in Queensland also remains relatively controlled at 11.2 per cent, below NSW (11.3 per cent) and Victoria (12.8 per cent).

Ms Palaszczuk hit back at Ms Armytage's claim: "What you said is not actually 100 per cent correct.

"So let me say this: over the last five years I've been in office we've created more than 250,000 jobs, delivered five surpluses.

"We were on the path to prosperity. What happened was we were hit with coronavirus, we had to go into lockdown and businesses have struggled.

"Queensland of course relies on international tourism.

"It is going to take time for the tourism sector to recover, but Queenslanders spend $10 billion going overseas.

Ms Palaszczuk has defended the border closure again. (Photo by Jono Searle/Getty Images)
Ms Palaszczuk has defended the border closure again. (Photo by Jono Searle/Getty Images)

"If they spent that money here, that would go a long way."

She added Treasurer Josh Frydenburg's Federal Budget warning that states who dragged their feet would miss out on infrastructure funding was "childish".

"I don't think we need to play those sort of games, I think it's a little bit childish," she said.

"We all work best when we work together.

"We have a $50 billion infrastructure program over the next four years.

"Victoria got $9 billion extra in the past, NSW got $7 billion extra, Queensland has not had its fair share."

 

 

brianna.morris-grant@news.com.au

 

 

 

Originally published as Premier in tense face-off with Armytage over border


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