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Belgium lifts restrictions on number of customers in shops

Credit: Belga

As of Friday, Belgium has lifted all restrictions on the maximum number of customers in shops and shopping centres, as the third phase of the summer plan goes into effect.

The decision to remove the limit on the number of people had already been made earlier and was confirmed in the Ministerial Decree on Wednesday, according to an announcement by the cabinet of Home Affairs Minister Annelies Verlinden.

This means that from Friday, large shops and shopping centres will no longer be obliged to carry out entrance checks either and that going shopping will almost be the same as it was before the pandemic.

However, wearing a face mask when inside a shop is still mandatory, and customers should still keep their social distance from each other as much as possible.

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Apart from this measure, the Ministerial Decree confirms the stricter measures for travel and the clarification regarding the Covid Safe Ticket for events that were announced by the Consultative Committee on Monday 19 July.

“As certain measures already enter into force at very short notice, there was insufficient time to submit the draft Ministerial Decree to the Legislative Council of State for its opinion, even within the shortened time limit of eight working days,” the press release said.

It stressed that all other coronavirus measures – old, new and adjusted – remain in force until at least 30 September 2021.

From Friday, indoor events can again be held with 3,000 visitors, and outdoor events with 5,000 visitors, as Belgium on Wednesday met the condition of having vaccinated more than 70% of all adults in Belgium at least once and having fewer than 500 corona patients in intensive care units.

From 13 August onwards, mass outdoor events will also be allowed again, provided that visitors provide proof that they have been fully vaccinated, that they had a negative coronavirus test less than 48 hours ago or that they were recently infected with the virus and have recovered with the Covid Safe Ticket.