County-level lockdown lifted from Monday and all shops will open on weekends
Loosening of Covid-19 restrictions announced as pandemic stabilized in Catalonia
Catalonia's county-level lockdown, in place from February 8 after a month of municipality-level restrictions, will be loosened from next Monday, March 15.
Non-essential shops, closed on weekends since early January, will also be able to open from next Monday.
These are two of the upcoming changes on Covid-19 restrictions approved by civil protection authorities, as announced by health minister Alba Vergés on Thursday.
Vergés stressed that the county-level lockdown will remain in place, but clarifies that mobility will be allowed as long as people stay within their social bubble.
Large retailers can increase their area open to the public to 800 square meters, up from 400.
Bingos and gaming halls can reopen, sports competitions for under 16s can resume, and festivals, galas, and awards ceremonies will no longer be banned from Monday.
The risk of new coronavirus outbreaks in Catalonia has been steadily decreasing since the third wave of the pandemic peaked in the wake of the Christmas holiday. Two days ago, the outbreak risk fell from 'very high' to 'high' for the first time in three months.
Catalan and Spanish authorities have ruled out a widespread reopening of the economy over Easter, just like they did last Christmas, and have instead announced tighter restrictions on social gatherings.
Spanish regional governments have also agreed to keep their borders shut during the upcoming holiday, which usually sees crowds of Spaniards travelling to other regions.