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Media companies seek a clearer picture on travel across borders

Australia’s commercial television industry has written to the Morrison Government requesting explicit permission for journalists and production staff to travel over state borders during the coronavirus pandemic.

Border closures that have been reintroduced because of a second wave of cases have made it difficult for journalists and producers to travel, as permits do not specifically describe media as an essential activity and the rules vary depending on the state or territory.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced stage four restrictions and a 'state of disaster' on Sunday afternoon.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announced stage four restrictions and a ‘state of disaster’ on Sunday afternoon.Credit:Justin McManus

In early March when coronavirus cases started to grow, the government did not explicitly outline which services were essential. That decision allowed all businesses that had not been determined as ‘non-essential’ to move between states.

But sources said that Free TV, which represents the interest of Nine Entertainment Co (owner of this masthead), Seven West Media and Network Ten, has reiterated its concerns about the lack of clarity and has pushed for ‘a national coordinated approach’ for both journalism and production.

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