Return of outdoor pubs and restaurants proposed for early June 2 weeks ago

Return of outdoor pubs and restaurants proposed for early June

A formal announcement is expected today.

The long-awaited return of outdoor pubs and restaurants has been proposed for early June.

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The government is set to consider plans for the reopening of the economy and society today following talks between health officials and the Cabinet sub-committee yesterday.

Ministers will meet later today ahead of an official announcement by Taoiseach Micheál Martin regarding the country's second roadmap out of the pandemic.

According to the Irish Times, the Cabinet will be considering a 'quicker-than-expected' plan for the reopening of society, including hospitality and other non-essential services.

Reports suggest that the reopening of outdoor restaurants and wet pubs will be considered for June 7. The €9 substantial meal will likely be scrapped, and hotel and guesthouses should be permitted to serve food and drinks indoors from June 2.

Hairdressers and other personal services are set to be opened on May 10, while the ban on travel between counties is set to be lifted.

These preliminary dates have yet to be confirmed by the government, but the entire roadmap for Ireland's reopening is due to be explained by the Taoiseach later today.

It is expected that ministers will agree to the plan after public health officials agreed that outdoors activities remained low risk. The reopening of the likes of indoor dining will depend on the state of the vaccine rollout later in the summer.

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin told Fianna Fáil TDs at a parliamentary party meeting earlier this week that June and July will focus on the return of the hospitality sector, including the reopening of hotels, B&Bs and guesthouses.

Martin did, however, add that reopening the economy too soon could lead to a sharp increase in Covid-19 cases. Yesterday saw 371 new cases of the virus confirmed and 13 additional deaths.