Belgium considers organising ‘large-scale’ test event in May
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Belgium considers organising ‘large-scale’ test event in May

Credit: Belga

Belgium’s different governments are considering organising a “large-scale” test event in May to look into how to safely reopen the culture and events sector.

As decided by the previous Consultative Committee, some 30 test and pilot events will be organised over the coming months to look into how the sports, culture and events sector can safely restart.

Other countries, such as the Netherlands, have been experimenting with test events for some time, and on Wednesday, Belgium’s different health ministers met to discuss a possible framework with conditions and rules for several sectors, reports De Standaard.

They are considering a large-scale test event in May that is supposed to simulate a football match that will take place at the European Championships in June, and can be watched on big screens at several places in the country, according to the newspaper.

More details about the test event, such as size, location or a specific date, are not available at this time.

Additionally, the framework still has to be given the green light by the Consultative Committee on Friday.

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The 30 events can range from small-scale events with a very limited audience, face masks and distance rules, to large-scale events concerning larger groups who do not keep a distance or wear a face mask, reports Het Laatste Nieuws.

Depending on a number of criteria (such as the number of people present, masks, distance rules, indoor/outdoor), each event will be assigned a low or high to very high “epidemiological footprint.”

Additionally, organisers need permission from the mayor whose municipality they want to organise the event in, the proposal has to go to the relevant minister, and the Testing Taskforce will have to give its opinion before the official green light can be given.

For any of this to be possible, however, the number of patients in intensive care has to decrease strongly first, and vaccinations have to go according to plan, Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and Federal Health Minister Frank Vandenbroucke stressed at the previous Consultative Committee.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times