The echoes of the hoofs rhyming with the fervour on the battleground often set legends boastfully narrated in the royal courts. While the ballads glorify the condiments of passion and agitation on the theatre of war, silent strategies that transpired the dream into victorious banners are frequently buried deep. Nevertheless, a knight regards the real worth of the quiet tactics which set the road to renowned chronicles.
The world at the current stage appears to be fighting a similar battle against the unseen foe which jeopardises the inner state of the nations. Covid-19 like the intruder has rendered the economies week and pushed many countries on the verge of crisis. The absence of any vaccine or treatment for the infection yet makes the world highly vulnerable in the silent war.
The unprecedented circumstances created during the current times demand shirking away some obsolete styles and experimenting with the novel strategies to successfully manoeuvre the way out of the crisis. Amidst the time when the theories on the fateful apocalypse were surging, Australia defied to surrender through swift strategic implementations as it embraced the innovative modern tools.
A mix of emotions, resilience, strategies, patience and even frustration together goes into the Australian recipe to emerge out of the pandemic.
Let us explore how Australia is sailing through the crisis as the island nation embarks on creating an exemplar for others to follow.
Movement from Pain to Gain-Phased Reopening
Covid-19 like a Black Swan event dazed the rest of the world, Australia rather than staying dumbfounded promptly delved into action. The Chinese and Italian side of the story had portrayed that indecisiveness even for a short while could lead to severe damages to lives and economy. The theory of action-reaction that propelled the country to accelerate its efforts also seems to anchor its further movements and strategies.
Australia plans to restart the economy in the three stages, the implementation of which will ensure the gradual lifting of the restrictions. The similar to ‘waterfall model’ approach to revive the operations would involve distinct phases, each of them will be executed after every fourth week. It would overall translate to resuming back the economy by July 2020.
Under stage one, the Australian government plans to open the dining services of the cafes and restaurants. However, the number of customers will be limited to 10 to ensure the enactment of social distancing protocols along with a density of 4m2/individual. Chief Medical Officer Dr Brendan Murphy stated Step one as tentative “baby steps into normalisation.
The country would also lift the gathering restrictions while the schools and educational facilities would reopen. However, the indoor gyms, movie theatres, concert venues, stadiums, galleries, museums, zoos, pubs, clubs, gaming venues, etc are to remain close under the restriction. The stage one prompts reviving the economic activities in the country along with the safety measures. Meanwhile, the interstate borders would not be opened under the first step to financial easing.
The stage 1 would enable people to re-connect with their friends and family members, since a small of group of people would be allowed to be together, to catch up at home and in the community. Also, business would again function like before and people would return to their respective jobs.
Some of the stage 1 re-opening specifics by the Australian government allows-
- non work-related meetings of 10 people; around 5 visitors at home along with already residing residents; an option to work from home as suitable to both employer and employee. Also, workplace have to come up with COVIDSafe plan and travelling during peak hours has to be shunned by people.
- re-opening of schools (primary and secondary) along with child-care centre, as a part of state/territory strategy; technical colleges/universities would lay emphasis on skill-based teaching method.
- opening of retail stores, however, managers have to create COVIDSafe plans for the people; open home/auctions can have around 10 people, their contact details have to be noted down.
- approximately 10 people for outdoor sport matching with the AIS framework for rebooting sport; further, pools would be accessible but with the limitations in place.
- hostels and hotels would be opened for check-in by guests.
- 10 people to take part as guests in a wedding; 20 people would be allowed during funeral in indoor gathering and 30 people would be allowed for outdoor.
- hair salons to open up again for business but would maintain a record for all the visiting clients.
The respective states would decide the timing for entering the first stage of the relaxation process. Also, local and regional travelling for recreational purpose would be allowed.
The country will move down to the second stage if it fares well during the first, without further epidemic outburst and declining infection rate. The latter phase would involve further reopening of more businesses, while the gathering number would be doubled for the activities permitted in the first period.
Reopening of intrastate tourism would be given a thought; however, inter-state travel would be decided by the conditions at the time.
The stage 2 plans would enable bigger gatherings and further opening of the business, and would be as follows-
- as many as 20 people would be allowed for non-work meetings; however, it is up to state and territories to give their nod for an increased number of people in an unavoidable situation that might arise.
- coffee shop/eateries would make room for around 20 people at one go.
- 20 people to be allowed in the movie theatres, concert venues, stadiums galleries, museums and zoos.
- also, outdoor sports involvement would be increased to 20 people; gyms and indoor sports would enable 20 people to join in, however, 4m2/individual density would be practiced.
- 20 guests would be allowed to attend a wedding ceremony, apart from the couple and celebrant; around 50 people would gather at one place for funerals; 20 people would be allowed for religious ceremonies, but all the gatherings mentioned will keep a record of the attendees.
- Massage/beauty therapy/tattoo parlours would be allowed to function with 20 consumers present on the site; however, saunas and bathhouses would stay shut.
Phase 3 is primarily viewed as the restoration of the Australian economic activities to its old glory. While the prospects of international travel yet stand unclear given the condition in different countries, Australian in phase three would be expected to carry the majority of the operations that may also include allowing international students. The framework dictates that interstate travel would resume and all the businesses in the country would be back into the processes.
The final stage 3 plan would be allowing –
- 100 people to gather for non- work associated meetings; bigger gatherings would also be taken into consideration; people would be re-joining their respective offices.
- considerations to resuming residential colleges’ and overseas students travelling back to the country.
- around 100 people would be allowed to enter diners/coffee shops, with the above-mentioned physical gap (in the article) between individuals.
- All the venues like - movie theatres, concert venues, stadiums galleries, museums and zoos would permit nearly 100 people; bar areas and gaming rooms will be considered to re-commence.
- 100 people would also be allowed at the outdoor and indoor sports venues, for wedding parties, funerals, religious gatherings, hairdressers/barbers/beauty therapies but record of every person present there has to be duly maintained.
In addition to it, interstate travelling would be enabled as well, but state and territory governments should be consulted for biosecurity reasons.
Creativity Speeding Up the Recovery
The resourceful solutions in the current scenario lie at the heart of emerging out of the crisis. The crisis came like a bolt from the blue and could have done unfathomable damages had Australia not quickly closed its international borders. Australia ever since then is conspicuously employing the right set of approaches that involves uniqueness to address the existing problems.
The challenges faced by the travel sector remained as one of the critical focuses of Morrison Government. The materialisation of the ‘Travel Bubble’ between the island countries, Australia and New Zealand is expected to enhance the prospects and revenue sources for the travel players. Both nations have been reasonably successful in flattening the Covid-19 curve, which would limit the chances of a rise in infection. The trans-Tasman trade is also expected to boost other hospitality players that provide supplemental services to the travel and tourism industry.
Meanwhile, both the Australian as well as businesses, have also amalgamated their efforts to mitigate the detrimental impacts of Covid-19. The creativity amidst the lockdown was not only limited to the kitchens where Aussies tried hands on new recipes, but the flavour of innovativeness encompassed business models and their operations.
The implementation of the Goldilocks principle that asserts on balance between the two approaches of relaxation and restrictions has taken full force. The new plan is demanding the application of innovative solutions such as Covid-19 tracking applications and real-time public dissemination of information to ensure safety along with economic growth. Meanwhile, the businesses can incorporate innovative tech-offered solutions to foster a quick healing process for the economy.
As Australia, along with few other nations becomes the forebearer of the victory flag, the world keenly eyes the budding success tale of the country against the pandemic. However, given the detrimental nature of the outbreak, it would be too early to tell if the country like the triumphant gladiator squashed the crisis altogether. Yet, the current situations demanding dynamic approach has set forth the country to sail through the pandemic, in the hopes of creating a saga of the decades.