15 December 2021

The region’s peak business organisation, Business Illawarra says the re-opening of NSW to the entire community will give business owners a much-needed boost in the countdown to Christmas.

From today, a number of restrictions and requirements have eased, with customers able to enter premises across the Illawarra irrespective of their vaccination status.

“This further relaxation of the rules will still require us all to exercise judgement and caution as our high vaccination rates allow us to live with COVID-19 in the community. But above all, this is a great moment for Illawarra businesses as we head into a busy and profitable Christmas season,” said Business Illawarra Executive Director Adam Zarth.

“A recent survey conducted by Business NSW, the parent organisation of Business Illawarra found that 32 per cent of businesses overall, and 43 per cent of businesses in the visitor economy in NSW, stated their biggest challenge was ongoing restrictions related to COVID-19,” Mr Zarth said.

“49 per cent of businesses wanted to see further relaxation of COVID-safe rules such as mask requirements and square metre restrictions, and 43 per cent saw reopening borders as highest priority​, so they have their wish.”

“NSW is only able to do this because of the way the entire community embraced the vaccination push with more than 93 per cent of eligible people now double dosed, and many now eligible for their booster shot.”

“Staff at businesses can get back to doing what they do best, and that is providing outstanding customer service, rather than having to check the vaccination status of those that enter their premises.”

“What is important now is that people use common sense when out shopping, especially in the lead up to Christmas where shops are busy, and patience is easily lost.”

“Be respectful of staff and fellow shoppers and if a particular store is packed upon entry, it is best to return when not as busy, ensuring the health and safety of staff and fellow shoppers,” said Mr Zarth.

Full details of the changes effective for businesses from today are available at: