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Australia plans to open its borders to international tourists as soon as possible, a government minister said Sunday, following a report that they will be allowed back by the end of February after a COVID-related hiatus of almost two years.

“We are getting ready to open as soon as we can,” Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews said in an ABC TV interview. “We don’t have all the information we need to be able to take the decision, but we are very close.”

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