UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed that from April 12, non-essential shops will reopen and pubs and restaurants will resume outdoor dining as the country moves to step two of the roadmap out of the Covid-19 lockdown.
Meanwhile, hairdressers, barbers as well as gyms can reopen, along with zoos, theme parks, libraries and community centres, Xinhua news agency quoted Johnson as saying on Monday.
“The net result of your efforts and of course the vaccine rollout is that I can today confirm that from Monday, April 12, we will move to step two of our road map,” said the Prime Minister.
The statement came as the Prime Minister was speaking at a virtual Downing Street press conference to give an update on his government’s anti-coronavirus plan.
“But we can’t be complacent… We still don’t know how strong the vaccine shield will be,” he said.
Johnson said England has managed to meet the “tests” set by the government sufficiently to go ahead with further easing restrictions on Monday.
The government previously set out four “tests” for easing lockdown: the vaccine program continues successfully; vaccines are effective in reducing hospital admissions and deaths; infection rates do not risk overwhelming the British National Health Service (NHS); the variants of concern do not pose a large risk.
Nearly 31.6 million people have been given the first jab of a coronavirus vaccine, according to the official figures.
The US has reported a total of 4,376,629 confirmed coronavirus cases so far, with 127,106 deaths.