Portugal to Present Plan to Ease Confinement Measures Next Week

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(Bloomberg) -- Portugal aims to present a calendar at the end of next week on the plan to ease confinement measures put in place to face the coronavirus outbreak, Prime Minister Antonio Costa said.

The government plans to take a decision on reopening schools for some students at an April 30 cabinet meeting, Costa said in parliament on Wednesday. He reaffirmed that Portugal may start to gradually lift some containment measures from May.

“We have to be prepared to retreat if necessary,” Costa said. The government is adding more medical equipment and will double the number of ventilators held by the health service, he said. Earlier, it reported that the number of infected patients in intensive care units fell for a fourth day.

Portugal, which has been less affected by the outbreak than neighboring Spain or Italy, has extended a state of emergency through May 2. The government hasn’t shut down the economy entirely, with industrial and transport activities allowed to continue operating.

  • Costa said on April 16 that the government would consider allowing some small stores to start reopening in May.
  • The government said on April 9 that it may decide to reopen schools in May for students in the final two years of secondary education, depending on how the outbreak evolves.
  • Costa said on Wednesday that he’ll present the supplementary budget before the summer vacation period.
  • Read more: Portugal Sees ‘Significant’ Drop in GDP Before Recovery in 2021

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