Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has suggested that mandatory quarantine for people arriving in the country "turned out to be a bit of a disaster" in Australia.
Mr Varadkar says the Government can't introduce such a measure here for legal and practical reasons.
There have been increased calls for mandatory quarantine rules here for people arriving from countries such as the US that are still struggling with the coronavirus pandemic.
Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn yesterday said mandatory quarantine would be a "desirable measure" from a public health perspective.
However, the Tánaiste told Newstalk Breakfast that the HSE, Department of Health and rest of Government have insisted it can't be done.
He said: "It's a high possibility [the pandemic] will go on for years until we've a vaccine or an effective treatment, and it's just not practical to cut ourselves off to international travel for that long - whether it's business, leisure, essential workers, people visiting friends and relatives, people coming home.
"The objective was to flatten the curve, suppress the virus... it was never to eliminate the virus. New Zealand thought they'd done that, and they haven't - they now have new cases every day.
"Australia tried mandatory quarantine, and it turned out to be a bit of a disaster.
"The centres, the hotels in which they quarantine people became clusters for infection, and now Melbourne's in a second lockdown."
Officials in Australia have pointed to failures in hotel quarantine measures as one of the key reasons behind the fresh outbreak in Australia's second largest city.
New Zealand has had a small number of daily cases - often just one or two - in recent weeks, having previously 'eliminated transmission' of coronavirus in the country.
Mr Varadkar confirmed that the Government still plans to publish a 'green list' of countries deemed safe to travel to by Monday, but stressed that could change.
He explained: "What we're going to do when it comes to travelling to countries that aren't on the green list or a-list is tighter controls.
"That is putting the passenger locator form online, and also means potentially looking at testing.
"People will say testing is inferior to mandatory quarantine, but if we know mandatory quarantine can't be done then maybe it's better to do something like that than nothing at all."