Lockdown Measures Loosened as Laos Adopts New Normal

Breaking News: Covid-19 Update

The Prime Minister’s Office has released a notice detailing updated lockdown measures, slowly allowing more sectors to reopen as the country transitions toward the new normal. 

The notice states that while the country has managed to control the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus, with only 19 confirmed cases, residents should remain vigilant and continue to abide by measures determined by the National Taskforce Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control.

The National Taskforce, village authorities, and other relevant sectors must continue spreading the message regarding the danger of the Covid-19 virus, and methods and measures for protecting themselves, according to the notice. 

A gradual loosening of certain measures has been decreed, in order to mitigate the effects on the national economy and provide conditions in which members of society may gradually resume their daily lives in accordance with the ‘new normal.’ However, measures such as wearing masks, provision of hand gel, temperature checks, and implementation of social distancing must continue.

The Ministry of Education and Sports and the education sector, in general, have been informed that schools and colleges may begin to resume certain classes, commencing 2 June.

Preschools and kindergartens, as well as primary school levels 1 to 4, and secondary school levels 1,2 3, 5, and 6 may resume classes. Final year classes at vocational schools, teacher training colleges, and universities may resume classes, as well as training sessions or short courses.

Other classes and levels may resume classes beginning 15 June but must continue social distancing of at least one meter and abide by other measures as outlined by the National Taskforce.

All types of sporting events and competitions may now be held, however, spectators will not be allowed to attend.

Night markets will now be permitted to reopen, as well as restaurants that have received official authorization. Bars and beer shops are to remain closed.

Cinemas may open and show films but must abide by social distancing and other Covid-19 prevention measures as outlined by the National Taskforce.

Construction projects, plants, and factories may resume operations but must follow the guidelines issued by the taskforce.

Local, traditional, and international border checkpoints remain closed. People are forbidden from entering and exiting the country, except for drivers of cargo vehicles or those with prior authorization.

Entry visas will not be issued to visitors who come from or pass through countries that have experienced a Covid-19 outbreak, except for special cases whereby prior authorization has been issued.

The easing of restrictions remains temporary. If an infected case is confirmed in a particular province, then stricter measures will be enacted in that province. The provincial taskforce will announce all confirmed cases and measures. If a cluster of cases is found in two or more provinces, then the country may revert to stricter lockdown measures stipulated under Prime Ministerial Order No. 6/PM.