Australia's COVID-19 'looseness' is standing in way of travel bubble with New Zealand - Winston Peters

Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters says "looseness" in Australia caused its growing second-wave of COVID-19 to get out of control.

Peters says it's "awfully frustrating" and addressed the "very terrible" situation in the state of Victoria - which recorded 317 cases on Thursday and 428 new infections on Friday.

He says the situation in Victoria is a "disaster" and while a travel bubble with that state and New South Wales, which also has community transmission, appears to be postponed, for now, he reiterated the likes of Tasmania is safe enough to open its borders to New Zealand. 

"It would've been a lesson to strive for Queensland to join as well," Peters told The Today Show.

"I do hope you get on top of things in Melbourne. It's a great city, it's a great state but boy, what can we say? If we can help, give us a shout.

"Looseness allowed this thing to get out of control, in my view, in Australia."

Peters, who is also the Foreign Affairs Minister, told the Channel 9 show's hosts he'd recently been in touch with Tasmania Premier Peter Gutwein.

"I said, 'Peter, you're set to go. Tasmania's got it better than New Zealand, you need to talk to your Premier in Canberra and get clearance because it's holding you back'.

"It's awfully frustrating - and I'm looking at the Premiers in the states in Australia and [Prime Minister] Scott Morrison." 

On Friday, Morrison told radio station 3AW he spoke to Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern about the issue last week.

"It's got to be a little bit moderated for what's happening in Victoria, but we discussed it at [the] national Cabinet last Friday, so we're working with the states and territories about how they can participate in that," Morrison said.