Maltese Prime Minister Robert Abela said at a press conference on Sunday that restaurants and snack bars will be able to open their doors to the public until 5pm, with a maximum of four people at each table as from Monday 10th May 2021. After 5pm, restaurants and snack bars will still be able to offer food delivery and takeaway services.
At the opening of his press conference, Prime Minister Dr Robert Abela, together with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Health, Dr Chris Fearne and Superintendent of Public Health, Prof. Charmaine Gauci, said the country had managed to keep the number of people infected by COVID-19 under control. He continued by revealing plans for another easing, a day before, non-essential outlets and services will be reopening after seven-week shutdown.
Measures that will be relaxed as from Monday 10th May 2021 are as follows:
- Restaurants and snack bars can open until 5pm, with maximum four people at each table
- Removal of travel restrictions between Malta and Gozo
- Professional contact sports can resume training
- All non-contact sports can be carried out without spectators
- Extracurricular activities, catechism lessons will resume
- Open markets will be able to take place
Gyms, Bars and Social Clubs will not reopen from Monday 10 May, but Prime Minister remarked that the government will not leave anyone alone.
Deputy Prime Minister, Dr Fearne explained that the numbers have dropped and this allows for the relaxation of measures. However, if the country experiences a surge, the government may re-introduce restrictive measures. This all depends on the numbers, Fearne stresses, saying that the further easing of measures on 10 May would only happen if the cases remain low.
He said that currently, passengers arriving in Malta through seaports and airports take a rapid test on arrival in the absences of a 72-hour PCR test. At present, 30% of the passengers arriving in the country do not have the test and as from 1 June, if passengers do not have the negative test or the vaccine certificate, they will not be allowed to board the flight to Malta. He said that mass events will not resume once the country reopens for tourism.
Dr Fearne also said that the vaccine certificate will be introduced in May and this will make travel easier. Travelers returning to Malta would not be subjected to quarantine when having such a certificate as there will be an agreement at EU level.
Prof Charmaine Gauci, emphasised that everyone needs to follow the mitigations measures in relation to the relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions from tomorrow Monday 26th April.
Prof Gauci said that from tomorrow groups of four, from two, will be allowed to congregate in public and groups of four households can gather in private residences, doubling from two. People allowed into shopping malls will depend on the size of each individual outlet. Prof Gauci emphasised that all outlets and services opening from tomorrow must observer the mitigating measures for non-essential services and only a person per four metres squared can enter shops. The maximum number of persons inside has to be indicated at the entrance. Hand sanitizers are to be available upon entrance and the wearing of face masks should be strictly followed. Operators have a right to refuse entry to anyone who is showing symptoms.
Prof Gauci said that Weddings may resume on 1st June and the mitigation measures and standards will be published in due course. She added that only 1 person per 4 metres squared can be allowed at wedding venues with a capping of 300 people for outdoor weddings and 100 people for indoor weddings. Musicians are to follow the protocols in place for them, and sit-down meals will only be permitted while face masks should be worn at all times.
Hospital visits will also resume in relation to Mater Dei Hospital and Mount Carmel from tomorrow.
Prof Gauci concluded that It is of utmost importance that everyone adheres to the mitigating measures to ensure that we keep our numbers low.