CNSU (National Committee for Emergency Situations) has approved the easing of some restrictions in time for the winter holiday celebrations. Part of the reason for their decision, is that the number of new infections of COVID-19 have been falling over the past weeks.
They shall enter into force immediately after their publication in the Official Gazette
Changes to Restrictions
Authorities have decided to remove the obligation to wear a protective mask in open public spaces, that are not crowded and economic operators will be able to extend their opening hours from 9 PM until 10 PM. Restaurants will be permitted to stay open all night on Christmas and New Year's Eve.
In addition, those who present a negative COVID-19 test will be able to enter the mall, something which has not been permitted since the October 25th restrictions were originally announced. Another measure which is being relaxed, is that tourism services such as hotels will be open to those who can present a negative RT-PCR or rapid antigen test.
As of December 9, the COVID-19 “Green Certificate” will also include testing. Thus, those who present a rapid antigen test or a negative PCR test will be able to enter the Christmas Fair in Unirii Square, an attraction for Cluj residents during this period.
Summary of Changes:
- Removal of traffic bans;
- Increasing the time interval in which it is allowed to carry out activities with the public for all economic operators, including for sports competitions and cultural and artistic activities between 05.00 -23.00;
- Removal of the obligation to wear a protective mask for all unoccupied open public spaces;
- Removal of restrictions on the program of economic operators such as restaurants and cafes in the periods 24.12.2021-25.12.2021 and 31.12.2021 – 01.01.2022;
- Allowing access to non-food business operators, malls and parks, and to people with a negative RT-PCR or rapid antigen test result;
- Allowing accommodation in tourist reception facilities and for people with a negative RT-PCR or rapid antigen test;
- Allowing access to all persons within the premises for the sale of non-food products, with an area less than or equal to 200 sqm, ensuring an area of at least 4 sqm / person.
Rather than rules that are not followed, it is better for them to be relaxed and “rigorously” followed.
Health minister, Alexandru Rafila, explained that, “These measures taken by the Government must be the first step in the partnership between the population, economic operators, and the authorities. The consequences of the pandemic cannot be better controlled than if this partnership exists. This openness on the part of the government is due to the interest for life to return to normal in Romania, but we cannot ignore the dangers that follow. This downward trend must continue and we must not return to the increase in the number of cases. Relaxation measures during the summer were taken on an upward trend, now it is a downward trend. But everyone needs to understand that they have to follow the rules. (…) These relaxation measures can change in a very short time if the trend changes into an increasing one.”
“Rather than having harsh rules that are not followed, it is better to have relaxation with a strict observance of these rules. In parallel, we are preparing for the situation of the emergence of the new strain. (…) The fact that we have four days, 24 and 25 December, 31 and 1 January in which outdoor events can be organized without restrictions, does not mean that we have to turn these events into vectors of transmission. We do not want to be sanctioned, it is not the key to success, but where these things are required, they will be implemented. I believe that the main advocates of compliance must be economic operators. They must ensure compliance with all measures for all types of activities they carry out,” he continued.