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To prevent the infection from spreading to areas in the country with little infection, the government is introducing stricter national measures by the advice of the Norwegian Directorate of Health and Norwegian Institute of Public Health. The measures take effect from midnight, night to Thursday 25 March and apply until further notice. A new assessment will be made by 12 April.

– The infection situation has become more unstable. We are seeing outbreaks in more and more places in the country. Hospitals must cancel planned treatment to make room for patients with covid-19 and infection detection is under pressure in many municipalities. We are getting more and more outbreaks across the country, and the situation is complex and subject to rapid change, says Minister of Health Bent Høie.

The Easter holidays may also lead to an increased risk of spreading the infection because many may travel more than usual and meet more people than usual.

– The new national measures apply to the whole country. They will first and foremost be experienced as a tightening where the infection is low. Where the infection is high – as in Oslo, Viken, Salten and Haugalandet – we already have very strict measures, says Høie.

– We now see that the more contagious virus variants appear in places where there has hardly been a single case of infection. We see that a single case very quickly leads to larger outbreaks, and that the more infectious variants of the virus contribute to more serious disease and are more difficult to stop. This is the experience of the municipalities, who over time have tried to reduce the infection with powerful measures. We must avoid that ever larger parts of the country get into the same situation after Easter. That is why even stricter national measures are needed now, Høie emphasizes.

NOK 500 million to companies that are affected

– We know that these measures will again affect jobs, especially in the hotel and restaurant industry. Therefore, the government will, in the revised national budget, increase the existing municipal scheme to compensate companies that are affected, by NOK 500 million. This comes on top of the 750 million kroner left in the scheme.

The new national measures

New recommendations

  • The one-meter distance now becomes two-meters distance. Those, who you until now have kept at least one meter away from, you must from now on keep at least two meters away from.
  • We recommend a maximum of two guests to visit your household.
  • If you come from an area with a high level of infection, you should neither attend nor host overnight visits. Those who live alone, and children and young people under the age of 20, can have overnight visits by one to two regular friends.
  • You should limit social contacts as much as possible.
  • We recommend the use of face masks in all places where it is not possible to keep a distance of two meters.
  • We recommend people to only use shopping malls and department stores in their home municipality.
  • We recommend that all travel that is not necessary be postponed with these exceptions:
  • Travel to work when it is not possible with a home office.
  • Travel home to the family, for students without family where they study.
  • Travels to a cabin together with your own household.
  • It has previously been decided that there will be digital teaching in universities, colleges and vocational colleges from and including 6 April. This is now being accelerated to 25 March.

New national regulations

  • Alcohol will not be served in public.
  • Indoor organized sports and leisure activities for adults are prohibited, with exceptions for professional athletes.
  • Gyms should be closed, but may keep the following offers open:
    • offers to those who live in the municipality.
    • rehabilitation and training offered individually or in small groups with an organizer.
    • individual training and treatment for which an appointment can be booked.
  • Swimming pools, water parks, spa facilities, hotel pools and the like must be closed, but can keep the following offers open:
    • school swimming, organized swimming courses and organized swimming training for people under the age of 20 and swimming for professional athletes.
    • rehabilitation and training offered individually or in small groups with an organizer.
    • other individual treatment for which an appointment can be booked and where bathing is part of the treatment.
  • Amusement parks, bingo halls and similar entertainment facilities are closed.
  • The employer must ensure that employees work from home in all workplaces where this is possible.
  • People who return to Norway after unnecessary trips abroad must spend the entire quarantine period in quarantine hotels. This takes effect from midnight, night to Monday 29 March.
  • We recommend that all planned events be cancelled. If events cannot be postponed, these rules apply:

Indoors, 20 people are allowed at events with fixed, designated seating.

Indoors, 50 people are allowed at sports events for people under the age of 20 who belong to sports teams in the same municipality.

Outdoors, only 50 people are allowed at events.

It is allowed with 50 people in funerals when permanent designated places are used.

Strict regional and local measures still apply

The government has introduced the strictest level of measures (measure level A) in 70 municipalities .

– The areas that have very strict measures locally and regionally will continue to keep these measures, says Høie.

Advice for Easter 2021 

Social contact

  • Keep two meters away from others except people in your own household (or the close contacts of single people). (new)
  • Use a face mask when it is not possible to keep your distance. (new)
  • We recommend a maximum of two guests to visit. Preferably have contact with the same guests over time. (new)
  • All events that are not absolutely necessary should be postponed. (new)
  • You should limit social contacts as much as possible. (new)

Action

  • We recommend people to only use shopping malls and department stores in their home municipality.

Travel

  • Travel abroad is not recommended.
  • Avoid unnecessary domestic travel.
  • You can travel to a cabin or hotel domestically but avoid public transport if possible.
  • People who travel to municipalities with less strict measures should, as a general rule, follow the recommendations that apply in the municipality in which they reside.

Jobs

  • Home office for everyone so long as this is possible.
  • The employer must ensure that employees work from home in all workplaces where it is practically possible. (new)

Sports and leisure activities

  • Children and young people under the age of 20 can exercise and participate in leisure activities as normal. They are exempted from the recommendation of a meter distance when necessary to carry out the activity.
  • Children and young people under the age of 20 can participate in sports events that bring together participants from the same municipality. Indoors there can be up to 50 people at such events. Outdoors, the limit is 50 including athletes, coaches, judges and any spectators. If children and young people train with a sports team in another municipality, they will be able to compete with this sports team as long as the infection situation allows it.
  • Children and young people under the age of 20 who engage in sports that do not involve close contact, such as skiing, can participate in outdoor sporting events that bring together participants from the same sports district or region where the region is used as a geographical division.
  • Outdoors, adults can do organized exercise if it is possible to maintain distance.
  • Professional athletes can train as normal, both outdoors and indoors.
  • Professional sporting events are allowed, with the exception of league games that are still recommended to be postponed in top sports. This also applies to training matches against other teams outside their own club. This also applies to sports that are out of season, including football. It is still recommended to postpone to limit mobility and social contact.

Higher education

  • Premises at universities, colleges and vocational colleges are kept closed for pupils and students, so that teaching takes place digitally. Libraries and reading rooms can stay open. (new)
  • The institutions can make exceptions from closure if access to the premises is crucial for students who are dependent on experiments or skills training that cannot be carried out digitally, where this is necessary to maintain the progression in the study. (new)

Rules for the whole country

Sports and leisure activities

  • Prohibition of indoor organized sports and leisure activities for adults, with the exception of professional athletes. (new)
  • Gyms should be closed, but may keep the following offers open:
    • offers to those who live in the municipality.
    • rehabilitation and training offered individually or in small groups with an organizer.
    • individual training and treatment for which an appointment can be booked.
  • Swimming pools, water parks, spa facilities, hotel pools and the like must be closed, but can keep the following offers open:
    • school swimming, organized swimming courses and organized swimming training for people under the age of 20 and swimming for professional athletes.
    • rehabilitation and training offered individually or in small groups with an organizer.
    • other individual treatment for which an appointment can be booked and where bathing is part of the treatment.
  • Closure of entertainment facilities such as amusement parks, bingo halls and. (new)

Travel

  • Persons who have been on unnecessary trips abroad must stay in quarantine hotels throughout the quarantine period (new – valid from midnight, night to March 29)

Private gatherings and events:

Inside: 20 people with fixed, assigned seats (down from 100)
Inside: 50 people at funerals with fixed, assigned seats (down from 100)
Inside: 50 people at sporting events for people under 20 years who belong to sports clubs in the same municipality
Outside : 50 people at events (down from 200 or 600 at fixed, allocated seats)

Nightlife, restaurants and events with a license to serve alcohol

  • Prohibition to serve alcohol in public places

 

Source: https://www.regjeringen.no/no/aktuelt/regjeringen-innforer-strengere-nasjonale-tiltak/id2841039/ published 23.03.2021