Monaco ended its coronavirus lockdown at 06:00 on Monday, May 4. However, the Government has emphasised that certain rules will still be in force. Notably, social distancing of 1.5 metres will continue to be a central requirement, and masks will be compulsory in all shops and on public transport. The wearing of masks is also recommended as a general principle.

Didier Gamerdinger, Minister of Health, said: “Masks are the central measure for this exit from confinement, they are the only solution to protect us.”

“The epidemic has passed, with a gradual decrease (in numbers), and the number of patients cured is increasing steadily,” he added.

Children in some classes will be welcomed back to school from May 11, although, addressing parental concerns, the Government has said that there will be no penalty applied of a student fails to attend. The classes returning to school will be CP, CM2, 6e, 3e, 1re and Terminales. The Government said: “direct classroom instruction remains highly recommended.” No lunches will be provided and pupils will need to take lunch boxes with them. For students in other classes distance learning will continue and all students will return to full-time education over the next few weeks.

Apart from shops, hairdressers and beauty parlours will be allowed to reopen from May 4 and the ban on religious services will be lifted.

The Government has published comprehensive information online – also in English – for employers who need to furnish their employees with face masks. The link appears below. On-street parking will no longer be free.

The health situation has continued to improve over the weekend, with 78 people having fully recovered out of the total of 95 infected by the virus since the start of the outbreak. Two remain in hospital, one in intensive care.

If all goes well, the first week of June will see the reopening of bars, cafes, restaurants, museums, cinemas, the beaches and swimming pools. Meanwhile , France starts to end its own lockdown from Monday, May 11. The neighbouring Department, the Alpes-Maritimes, has now been classed as green rather than amber as an indication of its readiness for the move.

It should be noted that Monaco residents entering France will still need to have an “attestation de deplacement” citing the reason for their outing until May 11. This can be downloaded at the French government website and is self-certified. It should be expected that the French police will continue to enforce this robustly.

Public Services  for Businesses website

PHOTO: Monaco’s own F1 driver Charles Leclerc volunteers his time to help deliver meals to Monaco residents