On Thursday, the Cuban government announced the gradual reopening of self-employed and State gastronomic services in the provinces of Matanzas, Havana, Cienfuegos, Ciego de Avila, Santiago de Cuba, Guantanamo, and Mayabeque, all of which have managed to control COVID-19 contagions.
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"Local authorities will assess the conditions of restaurants, bars, and cafés to approve their reopening. Only ventilated establishments will re-establish services to the table and counter with a two-meter distance between customers," Interior Trade Minister Betsy Diaz said, stressing that customers shall disinfect their hands when entering these places.
Gastronomic establishments that cannot meet these requirements may maintain home delivery services. However, under no circumstances restaurants and cafes will be able to re-establish the buffet table service, which requires that several people handle utensils and food.
In order to attend establishments providing in-door services, customers must make their reservations by telephone or Internet to avoid crowds or waiting times in restaurants. Managers and employees must also keep the utmost health protocols, such as the continuous disinfection of food processing and storage areas.
Starting today, the national curfew will begin at 10:30 p.m. instead of 9:00 p.m., which will allow restaurants to extend their opening hours.
"By acting responsibly, we will fight the pandemic and gradually reactivate the economy," Diaz said, recalling that 42 percent of the population has been fully immunized against COVID-19 so far.
Public services related to notarial and civil procedures will also restart from today but through appointments to avoid crowds. International tourism will also reboot completely from Nov. 15, once 92.6 percent of the population has received three doses of COVID-19 vaccines.