Doorstop Interview - Parramatta, NSW

13 Mar 2020
Prime Minister

PRIME MINISTER: Good morning, everyone, it's great to be here in the heart of Sydney in Parramatta. And today, all state and territory leaders are coming together to focus on one very important job. And that is as I said last night, it's about the health of Australians, it's about keeping Australians in jobs, keeping Australian businesses in business. It's about bouncing back strongly on the other side of this virus. All of the leaders are working very closely together. The health officers from each of the states and territories have been working incredibly close with our Chief Medical Officer, and that is ensuring that all of the leaders are getting the right advice and the best medical advice to make the decisions that they need to make in terms of how they manage the impact in Australia. So I'm looking forward to meeting today. I think this will provide an excellent opportunity again for us to align what we're doing. There already has been a very high level of alignment and cooperation. We're all working together for the health and well-being of Australians, the strength of our economy and a strong bounce back on the other side. 

JOURNALIST: We're hearing that the Melbourne Grand Prix has been cancelled this weekend. That will surely cause some panic around the country, what's your message to Australians? 

PRIME MINISTER: Well, each of these organisations will make their own decisions about these events. And the states themselves will act on the best medical advice in relation to these issues. But I'm looking forward to the game tomorrow afternoon. 

JOURNALIST: What contribution would you like to see the states commit to today? 

PRIME MINISTER: Well, today we will be in a position to finalise the health agreement on responding to the coronavirus. I want to thank all the states and territories for their strong partnership in coming to agreement on that. More broadly, what we're looking for now is just having the Commonwealth put down the very significant stimulus package we have for the economy as well as investing some $2.4 billion in our health system, which includes support for public hospitals. Obviously the states are now in a position to set out how they will be working to support jobs and support businesses in their own states. 

JOURNALIST: Will you be following President Trump in banning European travel to Australia? 

PRIME MINISTER: That's not the advice we have. 

JOURNALIST: Are countries like the US doing enough in terms of the stimulus they're providing? 

PRIME MINISTER: That's a matter for the United States. I'm focussed on what's needed in Australia, the health of Australians, the jobs of Australians, Australian businesses, and ensuring that we all work together, state and territory leaders, together with the Commonwealth to look after Australians, to look after our economy. We will get through this together, Australia. And today is another important opportunity for us to focus on that task. Thank you.