Norway allows alcohol serving and sports activities as it eases Covid rules

In a bid to relax Covid restrictions, the Norwegian government will be partially reversing a ban on serving alcohol in bars and restaurants, the prime minister. Jonas Gahr Stoere, while speaking at a news conference said, “We can ease some restrictions, but not all.”

As per the new guidelines, bars and restaurants will be allowed to serve alcoholic drinks until 11pm local time. 

Apart from this, youth sports activities will be allowed to resume, although adult sports will still be restricted. Quarantines, in most cases, will be replaced by a mandatory test regime.

The restrictions were introduced in December when the country was hit hard by Covid cases. 

Not just Norway but several other European nations are planning on easing the curbs. Spain, recently, became the first European country to move towards ending mask mandates. 

Also read | Are we ready to treat Covid like the flu? Some nations are increasingly thinking so

Switzerland’s interior minister Alain Berset has said that the transition from pandemic to a stage like the flu may be considered. While speaking at a media conference, he said, “We may be on the eve of a watershed, the transition from a pandemic phase to an endemic phase.”

Travel restrictions may also be eased in several European nations. Many countries have shortened their quarantine time. In Estonia and Iceland, quarantine time has been reduced to seven days.

Slovenia has also shortened its quarantine time to five days. 

Restrictions in the Netherlands will also be eased starting from Saturday. Non-essential stores, hairdressers and gyms will now be allowed to reopen. However, only a limited number of customers will be permitted.

(With inputs from agencies)

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