Portugal to further ease lockdown

The Portuguese government announced its decision to move the country to the final phase of “de-confinement” to ease additional Covid-19 restrictions.

The decision was made after 93 per cent of those aged 60 or above, an age group with the highest Covid-19 mortality rate in Portugal, received at least a dose of vaccine, Xinhua news agency quoted Prime Minister Antonio Costa as saying on Wednesday.

The government will keep current pandemic level of “calamity situation” in place till June 13.

Costa again appealed to all, especially the younger population, to get tested, regardless of symptoms.

Starting June 14, stores can return to normal hours, and tele-working will no longer be mandatory.

Meanwhile, cultural and sport events will resume under 33 per cent maximum capacity, and restaurants, cafes, and patisseries can serve clients until midnight.

More restrictions will be lifted on June 28.

Public transport can operate up to full capacity, and public services will allow walk-in.

The country’s Health Ministry said on Wednesday that about 20 per cent of people in Portugal have already been fully vaccinated.

“Almost 5.7 million vaccines have been administered, allowing almost 3.8 million people to receive at least one dose of vaccine, of which more than 2 million already have been fully inoculated,” said Health Minister Marta Temido.