SUVA, June 21 (Xinhua) -- Fiji announced to relax the COVID-19 restrictions as part of its efforts to restart the struggling economy on Sunday.
Speaking in a public announcement on Sunday, Fiji's Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama said there had been 64 days since Fiji confirmed its last new case of the virus and well over two weeks since the last of its patients registered full recoveries.
He announced Phase Two of Fiji's COVID safe economic recovery, saying that the careFiji app using Bluetooth technology to make contact tracing has formed a foundation of the island nation's economic recovery.
According the prime minister, from Monday, the nationwide curfew hours in Fiji since March 30 will be lifted from 11:00 p.m. to 4:00 a.m. as opposed to 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m. Night clubs will remain closed.
Social gathering numbers, which also include gatherings at weddings, funerals, cafes, restaurants and worship, will increase to 100 people from 20 or fewer while social distancing still applies.
Schools will be resumed in two stages. Year 12 and 13 students will start classes on June 30, and tertiary institutions can also open for face to face classes from June 30. The rest of the country's primary and secondary schools and early childhood centers will be open from July 6.
Gyms and pools at hotels can also be resumed from Monday, sporting venues can hold sports at 50 percent capacity so long as social distancing applies. Community sports will have a limit of 100 people. Cinemas will also be allowed to operate under 50 percent capacity.
Safe "blue lanes" will be established with strict requirements for yachts and pleasure craft sailing to Fiji, but cruise ships are still strictly banned.
Bainimarama also stressed that Fiji is working on its own "Bula Bubble" between Fiji, Australia and New Zealand. This will allow visitors from Australia and New Zealand to enjoy Fiji's isolated resorts.
Fiji had a total of 18 COVID-19 patients since March 19 when its first COVID-19 case was confirmed, and the last three COVID-19 patients were fully recovered on June 5. Enditem