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Bulgaria officially enters a third lockdown

Bulgaria officially enters a third lockdown

Initially for 10 days, starting from Monday, 22 March

Bulgaria is officially preparing for its third full closure on Monday, after Health Minister Prof. Kostadin Angelov announced a new batch of restrictive measures at a regular weekly briefing on Thursday.

The new lockdown is justified with the increasing number of positive coronavirus cases and hospitalizations in the last 2 weeks. According to the Ministry, with 483 positive cases per 100,000 inhabitants, Bulgaria ranks 9th in the European Union and 3rd on the Balkan Peninsula.

Thus, the new measures will enter into force on Monday, 22 March, for an initial period of ten days.

10 days of full closure - the new rules in Bulgaria from 22 March 

As of Monday, 22 March, 2021 to March 31, 2021, physical visits to restaurants and entertainment establishments are prohibited in Bulgaria, and only home deliveries or takeaways are allowed. The restriction also applies to hotel restaurants - accommodation establishments will remain open but are required to organize the delivery of food to their guests' rooms, not in the common areas.

As expected, casinos, as well as large retail outlets with an area of ​​over 300 square meters and commercial centres will stop operating, too. An exception is made for shops offering groceries, pharmacies, opticians, drugstores, banks, insurers, dry cleaning, as well as offices of mobile operators.

Cultural and sporting events, including cinema projections, concerts, theatre performances are discontinued; swimming pools, fitness centres and dance halls will have to close, as well. All public events are suspended, including open-air ones, such as festivals and fairs. The ban also applies to weddings and baptism ceremonies, as well as private gatherings with more than 15 people. Group excursions are not allowed either.

Finally, on-site education is also suspended and again transferred to an e-learning environment.

The minister also clarified that the official order regulating the third closure will be published later today.

Apart from the third wave of the coronavirus, Bulgaria is also preparing for the parliamentary elections on 4 April. Health authorities are adamant that all measures have been taken to ensure their safe organisation.

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