Today, Prime Minister Erna Solberg (H) proposed a controlled reopening of Norway in four stages. She did not announce a date for when the reopening could start.
“We will do this step by step and in a controlled manner,” the Prime Minister said when she presented the reopening plan in the Norwegian parliament (Storting) on Wednesday.
“After one step, we will, as a rule, wait for three weeks before we move on to the next step. When we see that it is safe and that the infection does not increase again, we will move on to the next step in the plan,” she explained.
The Prime Minister did not provide a date for each of the steps but signaled that step two could hopefully begin by the end of May, while step three could be completed by the end of June.
Here are the details related to each step in the government’s plan:
The first, preparatory step is to return to the level of measures Norway had before March 25, when strict national measures were introduced to deal with the rising infection in the weeks before Easter.
In step 1, the government will, among other things, consider opening up to:
- Having up to 5 guests in private homes.
- Serving alcohol alongside food until 10:00 PM.
- Events that only bring together people from one municipality can be carried out.
- The distance recommendation will be set to 1 meter.
- Up to 100 people can go to indoor events, such as cultural and sports events and conferences, as long as everyone has fixed seats.
- Up to 200 people can gather at outdoor events.
In step 2, the government will prioritize relief for children, young people, and students. But there will also be some relief for the wider sections of the population.
According to the Prime Minister, as it looks now, this step could materialize in the second half of May at the earliest.
In step 2, the government will, among other things, consider opening up to:
- Increased physical education at universities, colleges, and vocational colleges.
- Ten guests visiting private homes.
- For private events at rented premises, it will be open to up to 20 people.
- The alcohol serving time will be extended to midnight, and the requirement for food service alongside the alcohol will be removed.
- Events can be held with up to 200 people indoors, as long as everyone sits in fixed assigned places.
- Children and young people will be able to participate in events and organized training within their municipality. Indoors, there will be a limit of 100 people.
- It will be gradually opened for organized training both outside and inside for sports among adults in groups of up to 20 people.
- Domestic travel can continue.
- The advice to avoid travel abroad will be maintained unless the trip is strictly necessary. There will still be strict requirements for quarantine and testing for those who enter the country.
- It will be easier to have family visits from abroad, both from the EEA area and third countries. Among other things, the government will consider opening for entry for girlfriends and grandparents.
- There will also be relief for priority groups such as business travelers from abroad.
According to Solberg, it is too early to say what framework will apply to the celebration of May 17. The government will return to this at the end of April.
During May, there will also be answers about the framework for festivals and other events planned for the summer.
In step 3, the government will consider opening up for the following:
- It will be possible to have 20 guests at one’s home, and 50 people will be able to meet at private events at rented premises.
- For public events, separate assessments will be made linked to the possible use of rapid tests and corona certificates.
- Alcohol serving times will return to normal, but there will still be a requirement for registration and keeping distance between guests.
- The government will still want as many people as possible to work in home offices.
- It will be considered to gradually open up sports for adults for league games and other competitions.
- Children and young people will be able to participate in events and organized training across municipal boundaries.
- Top athletes will be able to engage in close to normal sports activity.
- The government will also open up for more trips abroad, but with continued quarantine and testing requirements. However, these requirements may change compared to what is in force today. It will also be considered how corona certificates can be used for travel abroad.
- The government will also open up for more normal labor immigration.
In step 4, a lot of things will almost return to normal, but there will still be requirements for infection control measures, keeping distance, staying home while sick, and some use of home office, according to Solberg.
This means that there may still be restrictions associated with large public events and sports and leisure activities.
It may also be relevant to have entry restrictions and requirements for quarantine and testing for travelers from certain areas.
Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews
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