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24 Sep, 2021 13:22

‘Back to normal everyday life’: Norwegian PM announces end of Covid restrictions

‘Back to normal everyday life’: Norwegian PM announces end of Covid restrictions

Speaking at a press conference on Friday, Norway’s prime minister, Erna Solberg, stated that the country will reopen the country on Saturday, ending Covid restrictions on businesses and social interactions.

The decision to remove the strict Covid measures comes 561 days after they were first introduced to reduce the spread of the virus, with Norwegian health authorities also giving the green light for other restrictions, such as those on sports venues and travel to end in the coming weeks. 

“Now we are going back to a normal everyday life,” Solberg stated, as she announced that, from 4pm (3pm GMT) on Saturday, the country will “remove most of the infection control measures,” giving “a big thank you” to citizens for complying.

Celebrating the removal of restrictions, Solberg hugged Health Minister Bent Hoie at the press conference, which the two said was acceptable as they are both fully vaccinated. 

While measures will be lifted in the next 24 hours, the Norwegian PM urged businesses to not start preparing for customers to return until tomorrow, as the rules are still in place until the “common time” that has been agreed. 

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Although Norwegian officials feel comfortable enough to start reopening the country, the official urged eligible citizens to ensure they are fully vaccinated, describing it as their “civic duty” and issuing a plea to “minority communities” who have not yet had the jab.

Responding to the announcement, the head of the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise, Ole Erik Almlid, declared that this is what “the whole society has longed for,” even though “the finish line has not yet been reached,” with more work to come until industries have fully rebounded.

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