Chancellor Sebastian Kurz says Austria intends to go ahead with plans to open all shops at the beginning of May and restaurants in mid-May.
Austria allowed small shops to open a week ago. Kurz said Tuesday that coronavirus infections have continued to drop, so the government can move ahead with the reopening plan it already sketched out. He said the government will review the situation at two-week intervals, ``so as always to have the opportunity to pull the emergency brake if that is necessary.''
The plan calls for the remaining shops, along with services such as hairdressers and manicurists, to open at the beginning of May. Schools are scheduled to start opening in May and religious services resuming May 15.
The government also plans to allow the catering industry to restart on May 15, with all staff required to wear masks. There will be restrictions on how many customers can be present.
Kurz advised Austrians against ``prematurely'' expecting unlimited freedom to travel around Europe. He said that he will take his summer vacation in Austria, and ``can only recommend to Austrians that they do the same.''