New Delhi: India isn’t the only country to have eased Covid-19-related restrictions from Monday. Twelve others, including European nations such as Italy, Germany and Poland, have allowed small businesses and shops to reopen, with strict social distancing guidelines, in order to revive their economies.
ThePrint looks at the services that have been resumed in each of these countries.
Italy has witnessed over 25,000 deaths and over two lakh Covid-19 cases so far, one of the highest marks in the world. But Monday, the country allowed restaurants to open for takeaway, reopened factories, permitted walking in parks and outdoor exercise.
Around four million workers are expected to return to work since Italy first imposed a lockdown in early March.
Schools have reopened in some areas of Germany for the first time since a Covid-19 lockdown was imposed on 17 March. Barber shops, salons, places of worship and museums have also opened after nearly two months, even as the country’s government has urged people to maintain strict social distancing. This is in addition to the reopening of shops and stores two weeks ago.
Germany has seen more than one lakh cases and close to 6,900 deaths.
The country, which has more than 15,000 confirmed cases, was put under a gradual lockdown beginning in early March.
With more than 25,000 Covid-19 deaths and over two lakh cases, Spain is another country that has been hit hard by the pandemic. However, the country Monday allowed small shops, such as bookshops, hardware stores and hair salons, to reopen, along with restaurants for takeaway. It has also allowed outdoor exercise and walks for its citizens.
Textile shops have been allowed to reopen in Belgium to encourage people to make their own masks. Some offices have also opened. Like some other European nations, residents of Belgium have been allowed to exercise outdoors and play sports, but with only two other people at most.
Citizens in Greece will no longer require a form asking for a valid reason to leave their homes.
Shops and businesses, including salons, flower shops and bookstores, reopened in Greece Monday. The country has seen 146 deaths due to the novel coronavirus and around 2,600 cases so far. Spas and opticians have also been allowed to operate after the six-week-long lockdown. However, schools, restaurants and bars will reopen only later this month.
Hotels, museums, art galleries and libraries were allowed to reopen in Poland from Monday. Poland has registered around 14,000 positives cases and close to 700 deaths.
The country Monday reopened stores under 200 square metres in size, along with hairdressers, beauty salons, car showrooms and bookstores.
Portugal has registered around 25,000 Covid-19 cases and more than 1,000 deaths so far.
In Iceland, gatherings are now limited to 50 people as opposed to the earlier 20. Hair salons and dentists resumed businesses from Monday. Schools and universities have also reopened after the country’s seven-week lockdown. Iceland has close to 1,800 confirmed cases of Covid-19.
Stores and museums, outdoor spaces of restaurants and hotels, beaches and public baths reopened in Hungary Monday, except in the capital Budapest, which has recorded about 70 per cent of the country’s cases.
Hungary has so far registered more than 3,000 Covid-19 infections.
In the west Asian country of Lebanon, barber shops have been allowed to reopen for pre-booked appointments under the second phase of easing restrictions. Restaurants have also been allowed to receive customers until 9 pm.
People can now go on walks on seaside promenades along the Mediterranean Sea coast. Some factories, government establishments, delivery stores, hotels and sweet shops were already granted permission to operate from 27 April.
The countries has seen 737 confirmed cases so far.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari had announced a step-by-step lifting of Covid-19 restrictions on 27 April. Starting Monday, neighbourhood markets are allowed to open thrice a week, between 8 am and 3 pm. Banks and financial institutions, a category of government offices and the corporate sector, will also be allowed to operate between 8 am and 2 pm. Nigeria has close to 2,500 confirmed cases.