The government imposes extensive restrictions to stop the spread of the coronavirus

03.03.2021 | 11:52

Tallinn, Stenbock House, 2 March 2021 – In order to stop the spread of the coronavirus, the government decided to make the existing restrictions stricter for catering and commercial establishments, which will enter into force as of Saturday, 6 March. Students who are facing final exams and national exams are allowed to continue partial contact learning as of 15 March. An order on these decisions is planned to be adopted tomorrow. The new restrictions will initially apply until 28 March.
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“We have come to a situation where it is impossible to decrease the number of coronavirus infections without additional restrictions,” said Prime Minister Kaja Kallas. “The decisions on additional restrictions were made by considering the fact that the infection is especially high among socially active age groups, i.e. working-age and young people. The availability of medical care has already decreased in Estonia and the workload of hospitals is approaching a critical level. Our aim under the current circumstances is to guarantee the sustainability of the Estonian healthcare system. While everyone is required to comply with the restrictions, evidently, we also have to improve supervision. The restrictions will cause considerable damage to the society in every sense, so we all must immediately bring unnecessary contacts to a minimum.”

Additional restrictions will enter into force on 6 March.

Catering and commercial establishments

Catering and commercial establishments will have to start following a 25% occupancy requirement. On the weekends, catering and commercial establishments must be closed, while on workdays, catering establishments may operate until 6 p.m.; take-away may still be sold after 6 p.m. Stores that sell food and necessities, such as pharmacies and eyewear stores, may remain open; this also applies to establishments that have a so-called drive-in option. Outdoor establishments, such as the markets, will have to disperse customers.

Sporting and exercising events

Sporting and exercising events are only allowed for professional athletes, while people with special needs are allowed to participate in exercising events.

The government decided to cancel the Haanja Marathon of the Estoloppet ski marathon series that was supposed to be held on 6 March.

Education

Students who are taking final and national exams at the end of the 2020/2021 schoolyear are allowed to continue with contact learning two days a week as of 15 March. Schools are required to apply the necessary measures to prevent the spread of the virus pursuant to the guidelines of the Ministry of Education and Research.

In addition to the mandatory restrictions, the government advises people to minimise all unnecessary contacts, and if a face-to-face meeting is inevitable, to meet in groups of up to 6 people. The government advises employers and employees to, wherever possible, use remote ways of working.

After the relevant order is adopted, it will be published by the Government Communication Unit at kriis.ee.

The government will decide on additional support measures for sectors that are most affected by the crisis this week.

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