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Costa lays out essential dates for easing lockdown: Hairdressers, small shops and bookstores reopen on Monday

31lockdown easingSmall street shops up to 200 square meters in size, as well as hairdressers, bookstores and car stands, will be able to reopen from Monday, when the country will no longer be in a state of emergency. Many restrictions will remain in place though.

The plan for reopening economic activity that was presented this morning to social partners by the Government gives priority to small-scale commerce and some specific services.

For now, smaller establishments that have doors opening directly onto the street will open – that is, stores under 200 meters located in shopping centres will remain closed to the public. In addition three other specific types of shop will be reopening (whether they are larger than 200 square meters is irrelevant): hairdressers/barbers, bookstores and car stands.

This information was confirmed to press by the president of the Confederation of Commerce and Services of Portugal (CCP), João Vieira Lopes, after being initially revealed this Wednesday morning by the Observador newspaper. According to Vieira Lopes, hairdressers and barbers will have limitations on their capacity, to ensure that the rules of social distancing are fulfilled and, as previously anticipated, the performance of these services must be scheduled via appointed.

The second phase should begin on May 18th, when, according to the president of the CCP, larger stores (up to 400 meters), as well as restaurants, will be able to reopen. However, the municipalities may enact some exceptions, allowing some establishments over 400 meters to be able to reopen as of this date, if they see that in their municipality it is necessary for this to happen.

For a third phase, on the 1st of June, shopping centres are expected to reopen. These are the dates not entirely set in stone at this moment, but, according to the plan presented at this Wednesday’s meeting by the prime-ministers, the measures will be analysed every 15 days, to decide according to the evolution of the country’s epidemiological situation whether they should go ahead.