In response to Friday’s advise from public health specialists, the Irish government has lifted nearly all of the country’s pandemic restrictions (21 January).
At a news conference on Friday evening, Taoiseach Micheál Martin declared that the “emergency is over” and that most of the COVID-19 limitations would be withdrawn at 6 a.m. on Saturday.
Following a recent spike in cases of the Omicron variety, a number of limits had been reintroduced and were expected to persist until the end of the month.
Restricted hours for restaurants and pubs, such as an 8pm curfew, have been abolished as a result of earlier openings. There will be a gradual return to in-person working beginning on Monday with the elimination of the demand for vaccination proof in the hospitality sector.
Certain measures will be kept in place until the end of February, when they will be reevaluated. People who have been in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, display symptoms, or have gotten the virus are still required to wear face masks in stores and public transportation.
The Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme, which helps business owners pay their employees’ wages, will also be phased out, according to an announcement by the government.
Officials have cautioned that the pandemic is far from over. Micheál Martin, on the other hand, has noted that if new varieties arise or the situation worsens, limitations may have to be reimposed.