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Junta eases Covid restrictions and will allow bars and restaurants to open for one hour more

The Junta's head, Juanma Moreno.
The Junta's head, Juanma Moreno. / EFE
  • The capacity limits for celebrations, funerals, football matches and conferences will also be increased

The Junta de Andalucía's 'committee of experts' met this Tuesday evening (31 August) and agreed to relax some of the coronavirus control measures in the region.

The panel's decision was announced by the president of the regional government, Juanma Moreno, after the Advisory Council of High Impact Public Health Alerts, had analysed the more positive data of recent weeks.

The headline announcement was that bars and restaurants will be able to open until two in the morning, although they must stop serving at 1am - as long as municpal regulations allow it.

Nightlife venues may open until 3.30am, although the must stop serving drinks at 3am.

Ice cream parlours, horchaterias, coffee shops, theme parks and fairground rides may open until two in the morning. Alcoholic drinks must not be served from 1am.

The capacity for celebrations, funerals and conferences is also increased, according to the current alert levels.

Indoor celebrations will have a maximum of 250 people at health alert Level 1 and 200 people at Level 2.

Conferences may be attended by up to a thousand people indoors at level 1 and 800 at Level 2 and up to 1,500 outdoors atLevels 1 and 2.

The Junta will also request an increase in the capacity allowed at professional football league matches, which is currently limited to 40 per cent, following an agreement at the national level with Spain's Ministry of Health.

At alert Level 1 wakes are limited to a maximum of 40 people in the open air, and 30 indoors. Up to 70 people may gather at funerals and burials in Level 1. At health alert Level 2 the limit is 30 people outdoors and 20 indoors. The limit for funerals and burials will be 50.

Bullfighting shows will be allowed to increase their capacity to 75 per cent at Level 1, 60 per cent in Level 2 and 40 per cent in Level 3.

These measures will come into effect in the early hours of Thursday morning, after their publication in the BOJA Official Gazette of the Junta de Andalucía.

The region has, this week, emerged from the coronavirus ‘extreme risk’ level after the incidence rate fell below 250 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. Only two provinces, Huelva and Seville, present an average incidence rate higher than this barrier.

The number of hospitalised patients has also dropped to under one thousand, far from the nearly 5,000 patients admitted at the peak of the pandemic, that were registered in February. This, added to a vaccination campaign that has fully-jabbed 70 per cent of the population, has been decisive in esing restrictions and offers a light at the end of the tunnel of the pandemic that began in the spring of 2020.

However, Moreno has recently insisted that the battle against Covid "is not won" and appealed to the almost one million people in Andalucía who "due to doubts, confusion or because they are still thinking about it" have not been coronavirus jabbed: "That they get vaccinated, now that they can do it.”