Dealing with an even worse financial crisis due to Coronavirus, Greece is rushing to expedite the return to normalcy for businesses.
With tourism being one of the main revenue sources for the country and travellers from other countries having cancelled their plans, Greeks are panicking.
Last Wednesday, the government received a plan from its very competent Committee of Scientists deciding to allow Greek beaches to open for the 2020 season while implementing all the appropriate safety measures against COVID-19.
The government wants to prevent beach-goers flooding a limited number of open beaches and wants local councils to be prepared.
The measure also comes as a dress rehearsal for tourists that are expected to be allowed in the country in July. Greek Government has issued a non-paper sent to the European Commission, stipulating its terms and requests prior to restarting its tourism industry within the European Union.
Greece suggested that travellers should be tested for coronavirus or for antibodies in the country of origin at most 72 hours before setting off on their holiday to avoid overcrowding in entry points, but tests could be sidelined for travel between regions and member-states which have “demonstrated clear and persistent evidence” that the Covid-19 pandemic is under control.
“Whilst containing the pandemic remains the priority, health measures should be implemented in a way that minimize unnecessary impact on cross-border travel,” says the government’s non-paper sent to the European Commission.
Greece also stated that measures should “ensure fair treatment of all member-states to avoid any nationality bias with all means of transport (by road, air, train or sea) to re-open at the same time under proportionate protocols.
Meanwhile on Monday, shopping malls, department stores and discount outlets will reopen two weeks ahead of the Development Ministry’s initial prediction. Restaurants, bars and cafes are set to reopen on 25 May.
The use of masks by staff and customers in airports, all means of public transport public spaces and stores will be mandatory.
To this date, Greece has recorded 2,819 coronavirus cases in total, 162 deaths and 1,374 recoveries.
Also read: Beaches reopen in Greece amidst heatwave