[WATCH] New COVID-19 restrictions: Bars, każini to close at 11pm, facemasks must be worn everywhere

Prime Minister Robert Abela says new measures required to curb spread of COVID-19 to ensure that life can go on

Prime Minister Robert Abela
Prime Minister Robert Abela

New COVID-19 measures

  • Entertainment and catering establishments, including bars and każini must close at 11pm from Monday 19 October
  • The wearing of facemasks is compulsory in all public places and workplaces bar certain exceptions. This measure will enter into force from tomorrow (17 October) but one week grace period will be given before fines will be dished out by law enforcement officers.
  • Children under 3 will be exempt from wearing a mask, as will those suffering from respiratory conditions. The mask may not be worn when someone is travelling alone in her private car, while performing physical activity or in circumstances where lip reading is a necessity.
  • The wearing of face masks is now obligatory for all students at all times in primary schools.
  • All previous measures on public gatherings and social distancing remain in force.

Bars and entertainment establishments will be forced to close at 11pm in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19 as Malta battles a surge in cases.

The measure will come into effect on Monday and is intended to improve the level of enforcement.

Prime Minister Robert Abela said the new measures were needed at this critical juncture to ensure life can continue as normal.

"Life must go on but to do so we have to be responsible towards each other," Abela said during a press conference this evening at Castille, after returning from a European summit.

Abela was flanked by Deputy Prime Minister Chris Fearne, Home Affairs Minister Byron Camilleri and Public Health Superintendent Charmaine Gauci.

The Prime Minister said there will be a greater emphasis on enforcement but urged people to do their part.

Fearne said it was important to act prudently at a time when COVID-19 infections were increasing. He said that rapid testing kits that will give results within 30 minutes, will be introduced as from 28 October and will be used in certain circumstances.

On a succesful note, Fearne said that in the first six days of the flu vaccine being administered, 75,000 people had taken the jab.

The new measures come on the day that Malta registered a record 122 new COVID-19 infections as active cases now top 1,095.