Estonian govt may extend requirement to ask for COVID-19 certificate, mask-wearing

  • 2021-08-05
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - The Cabinet on Thursday afternoon will discuss the introduction of additional restrictions in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus and the norm could be to ask for a COVID-19 certificate at all gatherings, regardless of the number of participants, Estonian public broadcaster ERR writes.

The obligation to wear a mask could also be extended, Minister of Health and Labor Tanel Kiik said. "A clear message must be issued here that the vaccine certificate has come to stay until the end of the pandemic. Once the world as a whole improves, we can relax these rules again, but until then, presenting a COVID-19 certificate should be the norm at all events and activities where people do not know each other, distance is not always possible, and the risk of infection is unfortunately increasing over time," Kiik said at the government's press conference on Thursday.

According to him, it should be considered when to switch fully to controlled events. From Monday, August 9, a requirement will enter into force whereby a COVID-19 certificate is required at events where more than 50 people participate indoors and more than 100 people outdoors.

"Event organizers obviously want clarity here, and it is also important from the perspective of the spread of the virus that the current situation, where 50 people are allowed to gather without a health certificate indoors and up to 100 outdoors, is probably temporary in a situation where virus numbers are growing," Kiik said. "We need to agree on the rules for which events and activities are only available with a COVID-19 certificate, regardless of the number of participants, because understandably the business community is also raising legitimate questions about whether an event with 48 participants and 52 participants has such a different risk of infection," the minister said.