Coronavirus: France to ease lockdown

Paris: France’s coronavirus lockdown will be lifted on December 15. France will begin to ease its strict coronavirus restrictions this weekend, allowing non-essential shops to reopen, President Emmanuel Macron has said.

People will also be able to share “moments with the family” over the Christmas period, Macron announced.

But he said bars and restaurants would have to remain closed until 20 January.

France has reported more than 2.2 million cases and more than 50,000 confirmed coronavirus-related deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Summary:

November 28

  • Shops can reopen under strict hygiene restrictions
  • Lockdown will continue but restrictions on how long you can leave home for are eased. Currently, the French can exercise for up to an hour within a one-kilometre radius of their home. That will be extended to a radius of 20 kilometres for up to three hours.
  • Religious centres can reopen but with no more than 30 people at any one time.

December 15

  • Lockdown is lifted if the health situation continues to improve, allowing people to move around the country and spend Christmas with their families and friends.
  • Cinemas, theatres and museums will reopen their doors.
  • Instead of a lockdown, the country will revert to a night-time curfew (9 pm to 7 am).
  • Bars and restaurants will stay closed over Christmas
  • Ski resorts are unlikely to be open for Christmas, says Macron, but a final decision is expected in the coming days. Macron said he favours a reopening in January under good conditions and that he would like to coordinate with the rest of Europe on this issue.

January 20

  • If the health situation allows it, restaurants will be allowed to reopen.
  • There is no indication at this stage when bars will be able to open again
  • Sports centres and gyms will be allowed to reopen
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