Shops selling underwear, clothes and shoes for kids, can reopen as of Tuesday

The decision is expected to approved today by the Czech government, PM Babiš said in an interview on Sunday.

ČTK

Written by ČTK Published on 18.01.2021 08:28 (updated on 18.01.2021) Time to read: 1 minute

Prague, Jan 17 (CTK) -- Stationery shops, children's clothing and shoe stores, and stores selling underwear can reopen in the Czech Republic as of Tuesday, a step the cabinet will debate on Monday, though Prime Minister Andrej Babiš said the decision is expected to be approved.

Up until now, these items have not been considered among the "essential goods" that can be sold during lockdown.

"As for further loosening of restrictions I can't imagine any given the current number of the hospitalised," Babiš added.

At present, there are almost 6,500 COVID-19 patients in Czech hospitals, including over 1,100 in serious condition.

The epidemic spread, which peaked last week, has slowed down this week, however, the daily numbers of newly confirmed coronavirus cases still exceeded 8,000 across all weekdays and even reached approximately 11,000 on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The infection risk index within the country's PES epidemic system fell from the highest fifth degree to fourth on Thursday and has held there since. The coronavirus alert and the corresponding restrictions remain at the strictest fifth level.

Industry, Trade and Transport Minister Karel Havlíček said on Prima TV Sunday that the cabinet will likely discuss the country's switch to the milder fourth alert level on Wednesday.

Referring to the possible softening of lockdown restrictions, Havlíček said it will first be necessary for the virus risk to maintain the current fourth risk degree for seven consecutive days at least. In addition, the situation in hospitals will be crucial, he said.

"We have to be cautious. We don't wish any single day of unneeded restrictions, but we have to be sure that the situation would not quickly deteriorate again after the [lockdown's partial] lifting," Havlíček said.

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