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Parts of Australia – particularly the state of Victoria – have adopted the harshest coronavirus control measures seen since China lifted its lockdown of Wuhan. Despite a relatively low infection rate compared to countries like the US and UK, Victorian Premier Dan Andrews has earned the nickname ‘Dictator Dan’ for locking down entire public housing complexes, permitting the preemptive arrest of “high-risk persons,” and deploying heavily armed police to break up peaceful gatherings.
Nationwide, PM Morrison told reporters a vaccine rollout would be “as mandatory as you can possibly make it” in August before walking back the comments in the face of criticism. Nevertheless, with a target of 95 percent uptake, it’s expected to be strongly encouraged – particularly if widespread uptake is seen as a requirement to reopen the borders to international travel. The budget papers set a timetable for a late 2021 rollout – after which an extraordinarily-optimistic recovery marked by 4.25 percent growth is expected to take place.
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