MIQ is evolving as New Zealand reopens its borders to the world

Published: 10 March 2022

32 facilities will reduce to 4 by the end of June, and the workforce in them will change too, with workers from Defence Force, Health, Aviation Security and other agencies returning to their home organisations for redeployment.

The 28 facilities leaving the MIQ network will return to being hotels, welcoming people from across the world after a 2-year hiatus. The 4 remaining MIQ facilities will run through to December 2022, subject to review, Head of MIQ, Chris Bunny says. 

While MIQ is winding down, it will still play a role in the community and at the border, he added.

“The government’s decision gives us the certainty to commence negotiations with our partners to consolidate and plan for the future.  

“We will now start having discussions with the facilities and our workforce about their futures. Some facilities are still required for certain groups in the next few months.”

MIQ has operated since April 9, 2020, and at the height of operations had a workforce of more than 4000 running it at any one time, unsung heroes who helped the equivalent of Kaiapoi’s population pass through each month: 12,600 people in 9000 rooms every 28 days.

“What started off with a phone call and a promise of a 6-week contract to facilities in our network in 2020 at the start of this global pandemic has turned into more than 2 years working as the core element of our response to managing Covid-19,” Mr Bunny said. 

“The MIQ workforce has helped 230,000 travellers – more than the population of Wellington - return home. They have also cared for more than 4,400 community cases.”

MIQ to wind down as borders reopen(external link) — Beehive website