Barbados Prime Minister: Barbados tourism to reopen cautiously
All businesses in Barbados have been given the all clear to reopen on Monday, following the country’s restriction of various services in the fight against COVID-19.
Prime Minister of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Amor Mottley, made the announcement stating that the decision was made based on public health recommendations, in conjunction with the private sector. To date, there have been 96 confirmed cases, 83 total recoveries and seven deaths. The active cases remain in isolation and are receiving care from the Ministry of Health and Wellness.
Speaking on the country’s response to and its handling of COVID-19 so far, the Prime Minister said that “we have done well in the past three months and I pray that we continue to do well.”
Focus on health and safety
Mottley outlined that while businesses such as gyms have been given clearance to reopen, the health and safety protocols outlined by the Ministry of Health and Wellness must be closely followed. These include wearing face masks, increased sanitizing of facilities, and practicing social distancing.
“I’m authorizing this phased reopening of a lot of our businesses, services and sports activity in Barbados, consistent with the adherence to the set protocols especially as they relate to physical distancing and density and other PPE considerations,” she stated.
She also relaxed previously implemented measures to allow for the return of sporting activity without spectators, and social events with up to 250 attendees. All restrictions have also been removed from public parks and beaches. However, residents remain under curfew on weekends, from Friday to Sunday, between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.
Tourism to reopen cautiously
Barbados’ air space is set to reopen to commercial flights within the first two weeks of July. Next week, the Government of Barbados will be meeting with various social partners to discuss the next phase which covers border reopenings and protocols.
Mottley also added that the Government will be launching a series of initiatives to spruce up Barbados and ensure the country is ready to welcome visitors to a pristine island. “If we want to welcome people back here, whether it is family or friend or business associate or visitor, we have to welcome them to a pristine looking island. We have to return the ‘wow factor’ to our beaches. We have to also make sure that driving around Barbados will cause people to say ‘what a beautiful countryside.’”
Another update address by the Prime Minister, following consultations with social partners, is scheduled for next week.