President Klaus Iohannis had on Thursday, at the Cotroceni Palace, a working meeting with Prime Minister Florin Citu, several members of the Government, the head of the Department for Emergency Situations (DSU), Raed Arafat, and the director of the National Center for Communicable Diseases Monitoring and Control within the National Institute of Public Health, Adriana Pistol.
The Deputy Prime Minister Dan Barna, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Lucian Bode, the Minister of National Defence, Nicolae Ciuca, and the Health Minister, Ioana Mihaila, also participated in the meeting.
The meeting focused on measures to ease the restrictions imposed in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
President Iohannis: We target 5 million persons vaccinated until June 1, 6 million until July 1 and 7 million by August
President Klaus Iohannis announced on Thursday that in the working meeting with Prime Minister Florin Citu, members of government and experts targets for vaccination against COVID-19 were established, namely 5 million persons vaccinated until June 1, 6 million until July 1 and 7 million by August 1 and a calendar of relaxation measures was prepared.
“We’ve already completed a long road, yet there is need for more, there is need for much more. If we want to exit the pandemic, we have to vaccinate, there is no other way to finalize this pandemic successfully. For this, in the sitting today we established some vaccination targets. I would speak only of a few. We propose that on June 1 we have 5 million persons vaccinated, on July 1 – 6 million, on August 1 – 7 million persons vaccinated. You will wonder why this data. We prepared a calendar of relaxation measures and we would like to have a calendar that comprises the entire summer period. Thus, we are preparing for relaxation, yet it must be a cautious relaxation. We want to escape this pandemic, we don’t want to relax in June so that we come back with restrictions in August. We want to have a calendar that allows us several activities, but which do not exposes us to the risk of the pandemic returning in force. Thus, we will have a step by step relaxation. We have elaborated the calendar that comprises these steps, until September 1, so that, at the end of summer, we have a re-evaluation to establish measures for the fall,” said Iohannis in a statement at the Cotroceni Palace.
He emphasized that these relaxation measures are conditioned on two extremely important factors, namely the evolution of the pandemic, measured through the incidence rate, and the degree of vaccination.
“If we want more relaxation, we must respect the measures that remain in force and we must vaccinate – it’s that simple!” Iohannis also said.
The head of state gave examples of relaxation measures, showing that they will be stated in detail by the National Committee, and the Government will adopt the decision with these relaxation steps. In this context, he announced that from May 15 the obligation to wear the mask outside is eliminated, with a few exceptions, namely markets, fairs and public transport stations, with the restrictions on night-time travel and those on the program of commercial agents to also be lifted.
Furthermore, outdoor sports activities will be possible with 25 pct of the seats taken. Also, he mentioned that from June 1, weddings, baptisms, festive meals can be organized outside with a maximum of 70 persons, as well as inside – with a maximum of 50 persons, and if the organizer guarantees that all the persons participating are vaccinated, the restriction on the number of participants is renounced. Similarly, he indicated that this measure also applies to sports halls.
The pandemic, according to the President, “reduced a little”, he said, and spoke briefly of post-pandemic Romania.
“Seems like we can breathe a little easy, but at the same time, dear Romanians, we must be very clear that we are in full preparation for post-pandemic Romania. The pandemic will not end tomorrow, it will not end on September 1, but, if we all vaccinate, still the pandemic will reduce and, finally, will end. But we want to be prepared, we do not desire, I do not desire that post-pandemic Romania be identical to the Romania of before, before the pandemic. We learned a lot. We suffered a lot. We have the chance to make Romania better. Post-pandemic Romania must be the Romania in which we implement reforms, in which we have sustained development, a Romania in which we have investments, in which we make the healthcare system better, in which we make schools safer, in which jobs are created, the economy grows and, I believe we can say this as well, post-pandemic Romania is also the Romania in which wages grow and in which the life of Romanians becomes better,” said Iohannis.
He reiterated that the doctors and medical staff are the heroes that made the management of the pandemic possible.
“The pandemic lasted over a year. There was much, too much suffering in Romania and I am sorry for all those who have suffered from this disease, but we must remember also those who made possible the management of this pandemic, doctors, medical staff. They were our heroes and we owe them thanks, thanks, thanks,” Klaus Iohannis emphasized.
In the last weeks, the President added, there has been an encouraging evolution, in the context in which the number of infections has decreased, just like the number of patients in the ICU and deaths caused by COVID-19, and the vaccination campaign has “come up to speed”, each day over 100,000 persons being vaccinated.
Starting May 15 the obligation to wear protective mask outdoors will be eliminated
President Klaus Iohannis announced that starting May 15 the obligation to wear protective mask outdoors will be eliminated, with a few exceptions, such as markets, fairs and public transport stations.
“Starting May 15 the wearing of mask outdoors is eliminated with a few exceptions – markets, fairs and bus stations. (…) Outdoors the mask can be renounced,” said the head of state, on Thursday, in a statement at the Cotroceni Palace.
Furthermore, he mentioned that starting May 15 the restrictions to nighttime travel and on the schedule of commercial agents are canceled.
“Sports activities – possible with 25 pct of occupied spaces. Inside we will have also relaxations that start, mostly, from June 1,” Iohannis also said.
Outdoor weddings, baptisms, dinner parties allowed as of June 1 with 70-person limit; indoor limit – 50 participants
President Klaus Iohannis announced on Thursday the timetable for the gradual relaxation of Covid restrictions, stating that as of June 1, weddings, baptisms, dinner parties can be organized outdoors with a maximum of 70 participants, and indoors with a maximum of 50 participants.
“Restriction easing plans include, for example, weddings, baptisms, dinner parties that, starting June 1, can be held outdoors with maximum 70 people. Indoor weddings, baptisms, dinner parties with a 50-person limit as of June 1. The numbers will rise as of July 1, and then from August 1, and size restrictions can be fully lifted provided that – and this is very important – the organizer guarantees that all participants are vaccinated,” the head of the state said in a statement at the Cotroceni Palace.
He added that restrictions on the number of gym-goers are still kept in place, but that requirements can be relaxed if the organizer or the facility manager guarantees that all the people who get access are vaccinated.
“These measures are intended on the one hand to protect us, and on the other hand to allow us to resume as much as possible our normal life and encourage vaccination,” Iohannis added.
It’s quite probable school year will end with all pupils in school
President Klaus Iohannis declared, on Thursday, that it is very probable the school year “will end with all pupils in school.”
“We continue to keep the norms that regard the incidence rate. So we have still the green, yellow, red scenarios, these things apply as up to now. It’s predictable that in the coming weeks most localities will enter the green scenario and, thus, most pupils will return to schools. In regards to schools the norms in force apply, but the relaxation measures which are available are available for all. It’s very probable that the school year will end with all pupils in school and it’s very desirable for this school year to end with most Romanians vaccinated,” said the head of state, in a statement at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.
He made a new appeal for Romanians to go vaccinate against COVID-19.
Compiled from Agerpres