Austria: Almost all industries are allowed from 19 May | Free press

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Vienna (dpa) – In Austria, virtually all industries closed due to the Corona crisis will be able to restart from May 19. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) announced this on Friday.

The central pillar of the step is a comprehensive protection concept in which access tests for restaurants, hotels, sports and culture are central.

“These opening steps are being carried out with strict security concepts, but they have been done,” Chancellor Sebastian Kurz (ÖVP) said in Vienna on Friday. He hopes that further facilities, for example for night gastronomy, weddings and club parties, can follow from 1 July.

Given these plans, he can expect an increasing number of corona infections, Kurz said. However, it can be assumed that the situation will remain manageable thanks to the vaccinations. “There is a certain expectation in the air,” said Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler. It is important that the government provides a positive perspective and ensures that it can be planned.

According to the government, Germans who want to vacation in Austria can plan again. The quarantine obligation only applies to areas with a high risk. A negative test or the green passport are sufficient for entry from Germany.

Specifically, events with a security concept for up to 3000 people outdoors are possible again from 19 May. An upper limit of 1500 people applies to indoor spaces. Closing time in gastronomy, culture and sports is 10 pm.

Austria has rolled out a very wide range of tests in a global comparison. The millions of weekly tests were and are a backbone of the Corona strategy.

During the Corona crisis, the number of new infections had recently decreased slightly. The pressure in intensive care units also decreased. In total, the seven-day incidence of around 180 is still well above the German value of 164.

According to experts, one of the main sources of infection is private. The economy in particular had given an enormous impulse to the opening up of the hotel and catering industry. The trade and many service providers have been open since the beginning of February, with exceptions lasting several weeks in three eastern states.

“What we need is a broad revival for everyone,” said Chamber of Commerce chairman Harald Mahrer, ahead of the meeting. Virologists have warned against a too early restart because of the still unclear trend in the infection process. Complexity researcher Peter Klimek said on ORF radio: “It is unclear where we are in which state in mid-May. You can’t really tell how big the opening steps can be. “

Experts are also concerned about a virus mutant that has appeared in Tyrol and is related to the British variant. Therefore, the obligation to test when leaving the state was extended to May 5.