Sydney records 239 new COVID-19 cases.
Greater Sydney has recorded 239 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19, the highest daily number since the pandemic began last year.
Nearly 111,000 tests were completed in the past 24 hours, which is also a daily record.
"Things are likely to get worse before they get better," the NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian warned Sydneysiders on Thursday.
There are also new restrictions for the eight LGAs that have been identified as high-risk. They are: Parramatta, Georges River, Campbelltown, Fairfield, Canterbury-Bankstown, Liverpool, Cumberland and Blacktown.
For two million residents who live in these LGAs, they now must:
- Wear a mask whenever they leave their household. It doesn't matter where they're going.
- Not travel more than 5km from home, this includes for shopping, exercise or take part in a "singles bubble".
Prime Minister Scott Morrison sets a new target for vaccinations.
Scott Morrison has raised expectations lockdowns will not be needed next year if all Australians are offered coronavirus vaccines.
The prime minister believes all people who want a jab will have the chance to receive one by the end of the year, barring unforeseen circumstances.
"I would expect by Christmas we will be seeing a very different Australia to what we're seeing now," he told reporters in Canberra.
Around 17 per cent of Australians aged 16 and over have been fully vaccinated, leaving the nation well behind similar countries five months into the rollout.
But Mr Morrison is increasingly confident as vaccination administrations reach around one million doses a week.