Is Georgia considering easing Covid-19 restrictions?
The government ‘may discuss’ easing restrictions in the major cities of Georgia in the near future if the positive test rate drops to 4% and this trend continues for a week.
Prime Minister Gakharia says that if this becomes the case, it may be possible, among other things, to open schools and resume the work of public transport.
The so-called “positive indicator” is the proportion of positive results in the total number of people tested for coronavirus. That is, over the past 24 hours, 17,850 tests were carried out in Georgia, and 4.04 percent (723 people) were positive.
“When we have a positive indicator of four percent over seven days, we can open the economy more boldly, carefully, wisely, and it seems that today’s trends give us grounds for cautious optimism,” Gakharia said.
Gakharia further added that if this trend continues, the restrictions will not be lifted immediately, but gradually, and “first of all, this concerns Tbilisi, Kutaisi and Rustavi.”
In large cities of Georgia, schools have been closed since March (they were open only a few weeks in the fall).
Since November, strict isolation and a curfew have been in effect in the country. Public transport, shops and cafes, and other public places do not work.
What will change starting February 1?
After a two-month period of restrictions, shopping centers and markets will open in the country starting February 1.
However, by decision of the government, they will only work on weekdays and will be closed on weekends.
The government justifies this ban by wanting to reduce the flow of people – on weekdays, when people are busy, they have little time to go shopping – they buy the necessary things and leave.
In contrast to December, in stores opened on February 1, fitting rooms will work, exchange and return of goods will be possible, and the allowable number of buyers in a certain area will increase.
All other restrictions remain in effect even after February 1.