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Government lifts several coronavirus restrictions, curfew remains in force

By Khatia Bzhalava
Thursday, February 25
On Wednesday, after the meeting of the Inter-agency coordination council, the newly-elected PM Irakli Garibashvili unveiled a plan for the gradual easing of COVID-related restrictions.

According to the government’s decision:

• Hotels in ski resorts reopen on February 25, cable cars will resume operations from March 8

• Intercity traffic resumes from February 25

• Municipal transport will be allowed to operate on weekends as well

• Restaurants and other food facilities will resume full services on March 1 in Batumi, and on March 8 in the rest of Georgia, except for weekends

• Conferences and training, museums, and libraries will reopen on March 1

• Gyms will reopen on March 15

• Public and private kindergartens will reopen on March 1, once every two weeks, 20% of the preschool facility employees will have to undergo mandatory Covid-19 testing

• Theaters, sports clubs, professional ensembles will be able to resume rehearsals from March 15, public attendance at their events will be allowed from April 1

• Higher and vocational schools will be able to resume clinical, practical, laboratory activities and conduct exams in-person from March 1, conduction of educational process in auditoriums will be allowed from March 15

• Shopping malls and markets, currently allowed to work only on weekdays, will recommence services on weekends from March 8

Per Interagency Coordination Council’s decision, a nationwide curfew from 21:00 to 05:00 remains in force. As Deputy Health Minister Tamar Gabunia stressed, restriction on movement has been highly effective, hence “maintaining this measure is crucial so far”.

It is also noteworthy that from March 1, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Belarus will be added to the list of countries whose citizens are allowed to enter Georgia by providing a negative PCR test result at the airport upon arrival.

Yesterday, Georgia reported 443 new cases of Coronavirus, 461 recoveries, and 6 deaths. As of February 24, Georgia has had a total of 269,438 confirmed Coronavirus cases since February 2020. Currently, 2,692 individuals remain infected with Covid-19. The daily test-positivity rate stands at 2.33 %, while the weekly rate- 2.36%.

According to the Head of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Amiran Gamkrelidze, Georgia has reported three cases of the UK coronavirus strain so far. 31 people have been in contact with the three patients. As he stated, “serious research is underway about the new coronavirus strain.”