Lockdown might be easing on both sides of the border with businesses able to take their tentative first steps into recovery, but it will take years for the economy, and life, to return to "normal".
Coronavirus and isolation have changed the way workplaces and businesses function.
Since our borders shut there has been a renewed emphasis on on-shore manufacturing and supply lines, which experts hope will herald a new era of Australian manufacturing.
Lockdown has also forced companies to take a deep dive into flexibility and home-based work, which will likely continue in some form post COVID-19.
But with every silver lining, there is a dark cloud.
Even with lockdown lifting, spending is expected to remain slow, job losses are forecast to continue and major Border industries could slump further as we enter a truly global recession.
Life returning to normal
Australian Industry Group regional manager Tim Farrah said although restrictions were starting to lift, it didn't mean life, spending or the economy would be returning to what it was pre-lockdown.
Mr Farrah said the economy was already slowing before COVID-19 hit, and that would likely continue as people and businesses tightened their belts.
"The retail and hospitality sector are both really highly driven by people's disposable income," he said.
"If you feel your job is at threat or you've lost your job, you're just not going to go to the pub for dinner or a couple of drinks.
"You're not going to go down and buy a pair of jeans or update your laptop or anything like that ... you're just not going to do it."
Business NSW Murray Riverina regional manager Andrew Cottrill said coronavirus would leave an indelible mark on the region.
"Some businesses won't make it through the other side," he said.
"We're hopeful that's a relatively small number, but it's going to be a different world when we start on this recovery and as the lockdown starts to relax."
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Mr Cottrill said this period of history would have a lasting effect on the way people and businesses.
"People are going to be a lot more careful about how they manage themselves, their hygiene, their workplace," he said.
"They'll be a lot more careful with their cash reserves and cash-flow and not get themselves in a situation where they can't manage through a similar crisis because there's no doubt there will be further outbreaks of coronavirus, and we need to make sure every business is prepared for that."
Falling off the cliff
Mr Cottrill said there was "no doubt" Australia was headed into a recession.
And Mr Farrah said it would be a recession unlike any the country had experienced before.
"It was a very different world when the last great depression happened, there's a global economy now," he said.
"We're breaking new ground in terms of a truly global recession, and hopefully not a depression."
Mr Farrah said the true effects of the coronavirus shutdown and mass job losses were not yet known, but the housing market had begun to slow.
"One of the big unknowns is 'what will happen to the housing market?'," he said.
"How many people will not be able to continue to pay their home loans?"
Mr Farrah said mass home-loan defaults would result in houses flooding the market, which could have a severe impact on the construction and housing sector, resulting in a big slump.
"Other than the initial hit which happened with the hospitality and retail sector, the manufacturing sector held up pretty well as did construction which are the two next biggest employers locally," he said.
"But the cliff is coming quickly in terms of the drop-off in forward work"
An age of flexibility
While lockdown has proven how effectively companies can work remotely, this too could have a downside.
"It's a lot less expensive for businesses to keep a staff member when they don't have overheads, electricity and all those costs; a big one being that desk and office space is very expensive," he said.
"That could lead to businesses getting more efficiencies; but for every positive there is a negative.
"We may see a lot less demand for office space. If there's a lot more office space around, rents will come down, property values will come down and that will negative impact on people's superannuation if they've invested in the property market. It could also mean a slow couple of years for the commercial construction sector."
Government investment vital
Mr Farrah said the Victorian, NSW and Federal governments all appeared committed to bringing forward infrastructure and manufacturing projects to create work and stimulate the economy.
He said regional areas were front of mind for governments, so the Border should do well out of the additional investment with construction of some long-awaited projects likely to be brought forward.
Mr Farrah said the two sectors were major employers and the investment would ripple through the community economy.
Mr Cottrill said government investment and internal travel were essential to kick-starting the economy.
He said getting internal travel going and people back to the Riverina Murray, when it was safe, would help the beleaguered tourism and hospitality sector recover.
"We need to make sure businesses have the confidence to spend money, to employ people and start new projects," he said.
"That will mean a loosening of red tape from state and federal governments and some economic stimulus packages that really get our economy going."
A return to Aussie Made
Both Mr Cottrill and Mr Farrah agreed that coronavirus could lead to a resurgence in manufacturing on the Border and in Australia more broadly.
It was likely, given Australia's relative containment of COVID-19, the country would be one of the first to emerge from coronavirus lockdown, which could see companies looking internally for new supply lines rather than waiting for other countries to get back to normal.
"Manufacturing could really benefit, it's really been shown how reliant we are on importing things into Australia now instead of making them ourselves and how some of that stuff is really critical," Mr Farrah said.
"There may be some critical items that are now made onshore, which would be terrific. Whether that's sustainable once the economy gets back to normal and it's business as usual and price pressures come back, we don't know.
"Consumers are always price conscious and the underlying reason all these things started to be manufactured off shore was ... other countries could make it cheaper than us."
Mr Cottrill said the government had made it clear we need to begin looking at the "sovereign capability" of manufacturing; that is, ensuring essential supplies could be made onshore and Australia could be self-sufficient. He said post-COVID-19 businesses might value Australian supply lines' reliability more, even if these were not as cost-effective as imports.