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Italy will reopen its borders to tourists from the European Union on June 3

A police officer near the Italian Colosseum
A police officer near the Italian Colosseum

The Italian government will reopen its borders to tourists from the European Union on June 3 and will override the mandatory 14-day isolation for foreign visitors to the peninsula, official sources said Saturday.

These measures were announced after a 10-hour Council of Ministers held from Friday to Saturday night and chaired by the head of government Giuseppe Conte.

The measures will be applied "in compliance with the links that derive from the legal order of the European Union", the statement said. The European borders of the Schengen area are currently closed.

These decisions can be modified based on "epidemiological risk”In the country, where at least 31,500 people have died from the new coronavirus.

Tourism is one of the main sectors of the Italian economy and contributes about 13% of GDP.

"The opening of Italian borders to European citizens not only favors tourism, it also saves crops with the return of some 150,000 day laborers from Romania, Poland and Bulgaria", for his part said one of the main agricultural unions, Coldiretti.

Giuseppe Conte, first Italian miniter
Giuseppe Conte, first Italian miniter

Starting June 3, Italians will also be able to travel freely across the country, without any restrictions, unless there is a flare-up of the epidemic.

Confined since March 10 and authorized to move only in their municipality for health or work reasons, Italians will be able to move freely from May 18 inside their region, according to the government statement.

The Italian Government announced in early May that on the 18th of this month museums and shops would open but, after criticism received for the slowness of its opening plan, the cabinet of Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Now consider with the regions whether to speed up times for restaurants, bars, hairdressers and beauty centers in those areas where the pandemic is controlled.

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The progressive resumption of activity in the country also seeks to prevent the Italian economy from suffering a greater impact than it will already sufferAs Rome calculates that it will contract 8% in 2020 as a consequence of the decisions adopted to contain COVID-19.

Italy imposed a quarantine on the entire nation in early March after becoming the first major focus of coronavirus outside Asia. More than 31,000 people have died from the virus, leaving the country behind the United States and Britain in death toll. But Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte's government has gradually reopened the country as the rates of contagion and death fell.

Social distancing rules were imposed in the sectors of the economy that have been reactivated, including factories and some companies. Schools are still closed and mass gatherings are not allowed, although mass may be attended, with restrictions, starting next week.

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